Facing provincial cutbacks, the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority is planning to spend $19.9 million to renovate hospital units and add a few beds as part of a new restructuring plan.
The announcement Monday follows the closing of three 24/7 emergency services departments at the Victoria General Hospital (VGH), Seven Oaks and Concordia hospitals in April.
The changes are partly being made to ease emergency care wait times in the province. Some patients can wait up to six hours for care.
“Change is difficult, and change in healthcare is particularly difficult. Everyone agrees that there needs to be change in the healthcare system, but not everyone agrees the nature of that change,” said Kelvin Goertzen, minister of health, seniors and active living.
The remaining acute-care facilities are located at the Health Sciences Centre (HSC), St. Boniface Hospital (SBH) and Grace Hospital.
Phase one of the overhaul—expected to be completed in spring 2018—includes renovations to create a new minor treatment space at SBH for less-acute patients. The HSC has a similar space, which is being expanded, and the Grace Hospital is also expected to get a similar area.
The announced changes add a minimal amount of beds, but are expected to improve patient flow by creating more room in critical-care facilities.
“It gives us additional space within the existing footprint to be able to see and treat more patients,” said Lori Lamont, Vice‐President of the WRHA.
Geriatric rehabilitation services from SBH will be moving to VGH, and replace the existing medicine unit. The medicine unit (and its acute medical services) will be shifted to Grace Hospital once the VGH emergency department is converted to an urgent care centre.
Lamont said in some cases the geriatric staff at SBH will be moving with the beds.
Subscribe to our FREE online news service dedicated to producing essential up to date news for the construction, building, and design community.