Sunday, July 06, 2008

New Hyperbaric Chamber Arrives on Bonaire

Bonaire continues to be a top notch dive destination for scuba diving; providing pristine reefs and diverse marine life unique to the Caribbean.

Last month, the island stepped up its safety capabilities with the arrival of a new hyperbaric chamber.

Last week, Bonaire’s new hyperbaric chamber arrived and was delivered to its new location in a building on Kaya John Nicolaas. The location is right behind the offices of Centro Medico Central, the offices of Dr. Richard van der Vaart, one of Bonaire’s hyperbaric physicians, and across the street from the island’s hospital.

The Stichting Recompressietank (Recompression Chamber Foundation) purchased the land and completed the new building. The total investment amounts to 1.6 million guilders (USD $899,000). The first million has been received and has allowed the development to date. The Foundation is looking for additional sponsors for the remaining FL 600,000 to complete the building’s interior and install the chamber.

Plans call for an area which is used as an emergency clinic with the necessary monitors and equipment, where a wounded diver can receive first aid and is prepared to enter the chamber. The complex will also offer room for the stay of divers who are too sick to be transported and where the diver may remain under observation in this intensive care unit until there’s improvement. A guest room, with all facilities, is available for family members of the patient. The foundation will run the new hyperbaric chamber with the help of about forty volunteers.

The image shows the arrival of the new chamber, which was manufactured in The Netherlands and which just arrived from Venezuela. (Source: Amigoe)

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