On Wednesday around 8:00pm, a diver who had the bends was transported by the Medevac helicopter from Saba to Statia where he was placed in the hyperbaric Chamber on the Statia Responder.
Harbour Master Austin van Heyningen said he received a call around 7:30pm from the Marine Department William de Ghannes, requesting permission for the Statia Responder to come alongside the Charles A Woodley pier, to give medical assistance to the patient from Saba, who had the bends. Van Heyningen said that the patient was flown in, and was taken directly into the Hyperbaric Chamber.
An Ambulance collected the patient from the Charles A Woodley pier and took him to Queen Beatrix Medical Centre (QBMC) for observation. At the QBMC, Dr. Baboe confirmed that there had been a diving accident on Saba and at present there is no decompression tank on the island.
In the past the island was able to make use of a decompression chamber at the St Eustatius School of Medicine, but with the school gone from the island, so is the Chamber. The doctor explained that the hospital has been allowed the use of NuStar Terminal’s decompression chamber, which is located on the Statia Responder. He said this was the second time its use was requested, once for a local patient and this time for the Saba patient.
After observations at the QBMC the patient will return to Saba. All this writes The Daily Herald.
Can someone please tell me what happened to the $50,000 the Saba Government pumped in to fixing the decompression chamber on Saba and why the decompression chamber on Saba is then not being used?
This is absolutely shocking in my opinion. Obviously the board and management are completely useless. Maybe one day they will have real elections and transparency. They brought in a technician and new equipment (and paid for it) and now they still have to fly people to Statia? Besides the 50.000US from government they also have more than 31.000US in fees collected from dive centers and their divers (and I believe they have much more but used it for other purposes then it was collected for). What is going on there?