When you can’t just push out the walls, you have to build new facilities. Especially when demographic pressure is knocking at the door. It is in the west that population growth is highest in French Guiana, with an annual growth rate of 2.6% between 2010 and 2015 for the city of Saint-Laurent-du-Maroni alone. The commune's location, on the border with Suriname, is also conducive to population movements. French Guiana’s second largest city is at a crossroads, with a high degree of mobility in both directions over the Maroni River. The number of patients treated by the Centre Hospitalier de l'Ouest Guyanais (CHOG), which is constantly growing, reflects this reality.
New hospital and state-of-the-art equipment
The CHOG is saturated and inadequately equipped to provide quality care. Classified as a historical monument, the current buildings could neither be extended nor fitted out appropriately. Hence the decision to build a new hospital, with AFD's support. The new building will have 361 beds and state-of-the-art equipment spread over 28,000 m2. The residential facility for dependent elderly people and the rehabilitation care unit will remain at the original site.
The construction of a new hospital in Saint-Laurent-du-Maroni will not only enable patients to be cared for in better conditions of safety, hygiene and reception, but will also make the area more attractive to health professionals. This is a very positive side effect in a region with a shortage of medical personnel.
Towards closer cooperation with Suriname
The new CHOG will also develop prevention, screening, therapeutic education and medical and paramedical care. The maternity ward in Saint-Laurent-du-Maroni, one of the largest in France, will have a suitable environment to reach its full potential.
In addition, the opening of the Albina hospital in neighboring Suriname, shortly after that of the CHOG, raises the possibility of enhanced health cooperation between the two territories. AFD therefore plans to support efforts to bring the two institutions closer together for better management of patient flows, based on the complementarity of know-how and care specialties. By supporting initiatives on both sides of the river, the Cayenne and Paramaribo agencies will contribute to the development of synergies at the regional level. In French Guiana even more than elsewhere, health has no borders.