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8 unit RSK modular ward   

After joint RSK training with UNHCR in Sittwe in 2017, the RSK method of construction was demonstrated to MSF staff in Cox's Bazar in 2018 with a view to using it for building emergency medical wards.

In the present COVID-19 pandemic we believe that this method of construction can greatly assist in situations where rapid building of isolation or medical units is required, especially where manpower and bamboo resources are limited.

The structural advantages of using the RSK shelter method, the ease of assembly of RSK ward units and the assistance we can provide are outlined below.

structural advantages

1.   The RSK uses only complete bamboo poles and not traditional bamboo lattices for the roof.

     This enables roof frames to be rapidly assembled  on the ground in very large numbers, before being lifted onto support posts.

2.  The strength and efficiency of span of its reciprocal frame roof means the RSK uses 33% less bamboo than any equivalent shelter.

This considerably reduces the time and costs for bamboo transportation and saves valuable bamboo resources.

3.   The RSK roof uses only two different lengths of bamboo that are interchangeable.

     This makes assembly, maintenance and repairs of the wards much easier.

4.   The RSK roof is not supported by the shelter walls but by the corner posts.

    This  allows available materials, including earth-bags, to be used to rapidly infill and make solid walls if required.

5. The RSK wards are truly modular.

     Four of the RSK units cover up to 40 square metres of floor space to which further RSK units can be added to provide a longhouse arrangement.

By not using bamboo lattice roofs the RSK internal  surfaces are easier to clean and disinfect. The overhead frames are also ideal for hanging partitions and intravenous drips.

3 step assembly
 PHOTO: S.Halbert  Red Cross training  Yangon  

Complete RSK roof frames are lashed together on the ground and stacked ready for use.


 PHOTO: S.Halbert     Red CRoss  training Yangon 

The support posts are sunk in the ground and the roof frames are lifted onto them and secured


 PHOTO: S.Halbert Red Cross training  Yangon 

Tarpaulins are secured to complete the unit. Solid walls can be added later if required


 PHOTO: S.Halbert  Bangladesh 2018 

Inside the RSK unit. A cooler, better ventilated space that is easier to clean and disinfect.

the assistance we can provide

The RSK method of roof construction for temporary isolation wards can effectively be delivered

over the phone if necessary in the present COVID-19 pandemic.

In addition we provide diagrams for assembly of RSK shelter units that we have used for our training courses in Myanmar, Bangladesh and Nepal.  Detailed RSK unit specifications will also be provided in both metric and/or imperial units .


Telephone support (Viber, WhatsApp, FaceTime and skype) and technical advice can be provided before, during and after construction as required.

Please contact me for full details.

Shaun Halbert

​Director RSK Shelter Charity

Tel: +44 7970 106786 (Viber / WhatsApp / FaceTime)

Skype Shaunvet

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