Betio and Tungaru Hospital upgrades

NZ Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Trade (MFAT)



The two hospitals on South Tarawa atoll, Kiribati, may serve one of the most densely populated communities in the world, but they were old and had failing water and sanitation systems that were no longer fit for purpose.

In addition to the health hazards from poor sanitation, wastage of water cost the hospital authorities a large part of their annual operating budget.

Calibre worked closely with the NZ Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade and Ministry staff over a number of years to investigate what needed to be done to upgrade the hospital facilities and then to manage the required work.

Refurbishing work is always demanding, but a 30-year-old Japanese-designed building on a remote atoll 1000 kilometres from home presented a whole new range of logistical and management challenges.

The original scope of our work was to upgrade facilities within and around the hospital. However, we discovered that a broken ocean outfall was discharging raw sewage directly on to the beach flat, which required a new approach to the project design and an increased budget.

Four years on, the Betio and Tungaru Hospitals enjoy upgraded water and sanitation facilities as well as new water sources and storage facilities.

These upgrades have provided substantial cost savings to the operational budgets and have provided modern and fit for purpose sanitation facilities within the hospitals.



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Peter Ollivier


+64 4 894 7860

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