Families in Burns Lake will benefit from the new $55-million hospital and health centre, which was completed months ahead of schedule, Health Minister Terry Lake announced today.
“Government’s priority is to provide access to patient-centred services, which is particularly important in rural and remote communities like Burns Lake,” said Lake. “With today’s opening, we have met a big milestone. Not only are we well ahead of schedule, we are providing a brand-new facility to help support the health of a community that has experienced some difficult times.”
The new hospital has 16 beds and will provide acute care and emergency services, diagnostic imaging, lab services and pharmacy. A medical clinic will offer primary, outpatient and acute care, along with the delivery of mental health and addictions and public health, as well as home- and community-care services.
“Not only does the new hospital have more beds, but the environment is more modern and will provide a brighter, more welcoming space for the community,” said John Rustad, MLA for Nechako Lakes. “It is great news that Burns Lake’s new hospital will provide the highest-quality care to families for years to come.”
The facility is a two-storey building totalling approximately 6,100 square metres (65,000 square feet). The hospital is a green and energy-efficient facility designed to achieve Leadership in Energy and Environmental Gold certification.
“It was an exciting experience to be there at the project announcement, the move of the nurses’ residence, to the grand opening,” said Ralph Roy, Stuart Nechako Regional Hospital District chair. “As a funding partner, we’re extremely happy with the final product, and I believe this is a building that will make the community proud.”
The project was officially announced in April 2012, and the first big milestone was the move of the old nurses’ residence in December 2012. The groundbreaking ceremony for the project was held on April 12, 2013, with excavation of the site. Construction began in January 2014 with substantial completion of the hospital in December 2014. Current hospital services will transition into the new hospital and be open to patients in early February 2015.
“This project is an important investment for families and future generations in the Village of Burns Lake and the surrounding communities in the delivery of quality, sustainable health-care services,” said Dr. Charles Jago, Northern Health board chair. “This project will enable Northern Health physicians and clinicians to deliver client-focused health-care services in a modernized environment, ultimately improving outcomes for patients.”
This year will see the landscaping, demolition of the old facility and paving of the new parking lots. The move to the new building will take place in phases, with current hospital services transitioning in February and primary-care services, such as occupancy of physicians’ offices, expected later in 2015.
PCL Constructors Westcoast Inc. built the new Lakes District Hospital and Health Centre. The total project cost of $55 million was shared between the Government of British Columbia and Stuart Nechako Regional Hospital District.
Today’s announcement builds on the government’s Rural Health Strategy, a plan to guide the strategic direction of health services for rural and remote communities to ensure residents have access to the care they need, where they need it most.
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Ministry of Health
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