San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Government Will Provide Funds for Hospital Repair

The Costa Rican government has agreed to provide the $10 million necessary to reconstruct part of CalderónGuardiaHospital in San José that was destroyed by a fire in July 2005.

Taiwan had planned to donate these funds, but it reneged on this offer when Costa Rica ended diplomatic relations with that country in order to begin relations with China last month.

Social Security System (Caja) president Eduardo Doryan announced Tuesday that the necessary funds will be factored into the government’s budget for 2008 and 2009 and that it has begun receiving offers from companies interested in taking on the reconstruction project.

The new 15,000-square-meter building will have six levels and house several departments including X-ray and nutrition and 280 hospital beds. The Caja hopes construction will begin as soon as a company is licensed and that it will be completed within 70 weeks. Parts of the hospital were destroyed when flames consumed the building, killing 19 patients (TT, July 15, 2005).

Taiwan had already donated $5 million of the promised $15 million when the donation was reneged. Costa Rica began diplomatic relations with China and broke ties with Taiwan June 1 (TT, June 8).


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