19 Sep 2005

Marshalls declares emergency after hospital fire in Majuro

12:45 pm on 19 September 2005

The Marshall Islands government has declared a state of national emergency after a fire at Majuro hospital.

Pharmaceutical and medical supply warehouses were destroyed as well as several other buildings in the blaze which erupted on Friday.

There was no immediate loss of life

Most of the in-patients were transported to be housed and fed at the Marshall Islands Resort hotel.

Some intensive care patients were temporarily placed in the Nitijela Conference Room of the government building, while a few patients, including those in TB isolation, were being cared for in an undamaged part of the hospital.

A statement from the Office of the President says the immediate priorities are for the replenishment of the supply of medicine and pharmaceuticals.

The Out Patient Clinic of the Hospital will be closed and only the Emergency Room will be open until repairs are be made to the damaged portions of the hospital.

President Kessai Note is at the UN summit in New York but will return early because of the emergency.