The Kingdom’s first state-of the-art Covid-19 treatment centre, which is being constructed on an 8ha site on the northwestern outskirts of the capital, is now 30 per cent complete, according to officials from the Ministry of Health and Phnom Penh Municipal Administration following their June 24 inspection.

Located in Prek Pnov district’s Kouk Roka commune, the Techo Santepheap Covid-19 Treatment Centre will be able to accommodate 11,000 patients.

Of the centre’s nine buildings, seven will be used for treatment, one for administration and one for staff accommodation, said representatives of the construction company during the inspection.

Health ministry secretary of state Youk Sambath said the ministry had urged the firm, which she did not name, to accelerate its progress, suggesting that at least five buildings be complete by February next year.

The five buildings, she noted, are the administrative office tower, staff accommodation, two wards and an emergency department. This will mean that the facility will be prepared to treat a limited number of patients as soon as possible, in case of a new outbreak.

“The remaining buildings are set to be completed in June 2023. The treatment centre – the first of its kind in Cambodia – will be equipped with the latest medical equipment, meaning it will be of international standard,” she added.

Prime Minister Hun Sen instructed the ministry and municipal administration to begin construction on a facility that would have up-to-date equipment and be able to treat thousands late last year.

Or Vandine, ministry spokeswoman and head of the national Covid-19 vaccination committee, said the premier expands the Kingdom’s healthcare capacity as a precautionary measure. Adding a further 10,000 beds meant the nation would be in a good position to deal with another pandemic, should one happen in the future.

“Strengthening the capacity of hospitals was needed. Having a wide range of equipment to support both a response to communicable diseases and the treatment of non-communicable diseases is the ultimate goal,” she added.

Cambodia has not reported any new Covid-19 cases or deaths in the last 50 days.

As of June 26, the country had recorded a total of 136,262 Covid-19 cases, with 133,206 recoveries and 3,056 fatalities.