Sesriem emergency centre now open
A new emergency medical centre was opened at Sesriem this week. The centre, which will respond to all medical needs in the area, was officially opened by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Works and Transport, George Simataa, on behalf of President Hifikepunye Pohamba.
The Mayte Emergency Medical Center, a 10-bed, full-service health centre was constructed at a cost of N$6 million in memory of the late Mayte Hernandez, a Spanish national who died from injuries after a fatal road crash near Sesriem a year ago. A lack of emergency medical services at Sesriem was partly to be blamed for Hernandez’s death. The roads in this area are very popular with tourists as Sesriem is the gateway to the world famous Sossusvlei.
Upon her death, Hernandez’s fiancée Charles Hayoz, who survived the crash established the Mayte Hernandez Foundation, and entered into agreement with the MVA Fund to engage in a broad public education approach to crash and injury prevention and establish an emergency medical response centre to serve the medical needs of the Sesriem community and surrounding areas so that more lives would be saved.
Hayoz invested N$ 10 million in the project for the next five years, of which N$900,000 is allocated to the publishing and distribution of 100,000 copies of road safety brochures. The brochure, will be printed in five different languages, i.e. French, English, Spanish, Italian and German to educate particular self-driving tourists on local driving conditions. On its part, the MVA Fund committed N$4 million to the project for the next five years.
The Mayte Emergency Medical Centre is staffed by six certified Emergency Medical Care Practitioners, with two off-road ambulances at their disposal. A doctor and nurse will be deployed to the centre in due course.