The top floor of the new wing at Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital (KBRH) opened for outpatient care on Monday.
The second expansion, located above the new emergency department that opened last year, will house the new much more spacious ambulatory care unit of the regional hospital. Ambulatory care includes outpatient procedures such as endoscopies, cystoscopies and other minor procedures, as well as treatment for acute and chronic illnesses.
“KRBH is so important to people right across the region and this redevelopment has been and continues to be a top priority for our board,” says Suzan Hewat, chair of the West Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital District.
“Having an enhanced regional hospital allows people to receive care in a comfortable setting when they are most in need. We are thrilled to see this new unit opening to patients.”
The new wing is part of an ongoing redevelopment of KBRH and features new procedure rooms, endoscopy suites and recovery rooms, new patient change rooms and natural light.
The new pharmacy will be three times bigger compared with the current location on the main floor, and is expected to open in 2022. A newly renovated medical records office has already opened. And work is underway to expand the oncology unit and cast clinic, as well as to update the physiotherapy department.
The overall budget for the ambulatory care wing and pharmacy is $38.8 million: $23.3 million is funded by the provincial government and $15.5 million from taxpayers living in the West Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital District.
The KBRH Health Foundation has committed to raising $750,000 for the ambulatory care development after surpassing its $1-million goal for the emergency department project.
The ambulatory campaign is now underway.
“We have such an incredible community and the support we received for our emergency department campaign was overwhelming, ” said Lisa Pasin, KBRH Health Foundation director of development.
“We want to continue to raise money and support our regional hospital. We are tremendously proud to be a part of the ongoing redevelopment of Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital,” she added.
“These expansions will improve health care for residents of the Kootenay Boundary for years to come.”
KBRH opened in 1954 and offers a variety of health-care services, including core physician specialties, 24-hour emergency and trauma services, Level 2 laboratory, acute and obstetrical care, psychiatry, and chemotherapy.
“This is great news for people in the region as we have taken another step towards a fully redeveloped Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital,” said Katrine Conroy, MLA for Kootenay West. “I look forward to the new pharmacy that will be opening in the next phase as our hospital evolves into a modern facility that will serve people for decades to come.”