State-of-the-art and ‘di nos’. The new Curaçao Medical Centre - in operation since November 2019 - means a great improvement for the care of Curaçao and the entire Caribbean region. An immense leap has been made from a 164-year-old to a state-of-the-art hospital. Architects from OZ and EGM joined together to design the Medical Centre (CMC). The image of healthcare on Curaçao as being backward, certainly deserves to be changed after the opening of the hospital: the CMC has the most modern equipment and meets international standards. A special feature of the design is that it fits within the given climate and culture. The hospital, therefore, allows both staff and patients to feel at home. Physical and mental comfort serves to work on recovery.
The first new hospital in 164 years. The previous hospital had already been in operation for 164 years and was very outdated. The first reports of the desire to build a new hospital date back to 1963. The Curaçao government wants to realize a new hospital at the level of international standards and the government commissioned the Netherlands Antilles Development Foundation (USONA) to develop an operational hospital for them. Following the market consultation in 2011, Ballast Nedam was informed by OZ that this development was coming. OZ has 25 years of experience in building on Curacao and in the tropics. EGM Architects was asked because of their extensive hospital expertise,” says Juliana. OZ and EGM jointly developed a concept proposal for the mass construction of the hospital. The urban task - which also included the hospital being built within a UNESCO area - was the responsibility of OZ.
Strong design team. The design puts the patient, staff, and visitors first. From the start, it was clear to the design team that the hospital had to become a hospital ‘di nos’. In addition, there was a strong team that believed in the design and knew how to convey this with enthusiasm and conviction at every step along the way. An important milestone in that process was convincing UNESCO to include the hospital in the World Heritage site.
State-of-the-art. The new CMC has state-of-the-art operating theatres and equipment. In the call for tenders, the goal was set of a hospital that meets international standards and this has been achieved. The basis for this is the program of requirements compiled by an expert team. The construction meets the Dutch NEN standard. The sustainable aspects of the CMC have been recognized with the LEED Gold certificate (accredited by the end of 2023).
A hospital ‘di nos’. The hospital responds to the history, culture, climate, and natural conditions of Curaçao. A hospital ‘di nos’ (of us), in other words, a hospital that should be for everyone, with a recognizable environment that provides peace and contributes to healing. Such a design promotes the well-being of patients and staff but also reduces stress and medical errors. For the architects, the use of these local colors in the hospital was an important part of creating a healing environment.