A final concept plan and business plan for the hospital improvements are expected to be ready by 2014, the B.C. government announced today (June 13).
The renewal project is expected to include construction of a new outpatient care tower, infrastructure improvements, and renovations such as seismic upgrades.
Premier Clark said the century-old hospital on Burrard Street has “significant infrastructure challenges”.
“It’s critically important that we take the next steps in the redevelopment of this very, very important hospital, some would say the heart and soul of healthcare here in British Columbia,” Clark said at a news conference.
“I want patients and I want our health-care professionals to know that they can have confidence in the great priority that my government has put on redeveloping this hospital, modernizing it, and bringing it into this new century.”
The NDP criticized the premier’s announcement, saying the B.C. government has been promising to improve the hospital for years.
“There is a concept plan, yet today she [Clark] announces that she’s going to commit to St. Paul’s by producing a concept plan. Well, we already have one from 2010,” Chandra Herbert told reporters.
“It’s an attempt at electioneering and pretending you’re doing something when in fact you’re doing nothing.”
Meanwhile, the B.C. government’s pledge to move forward on the upgrades was welcomed by Providence Health Care, the organization that runs the hospital.
“The St. Paul’s renewal project will revitalize our ability to provide the latest and best care to more people. It will be faster care and more effective care,” Providence Health Care CEO Dianne Doyle said.
Today’s news conference at St. Paul’s Hospital follows an announcement yesterday by the province about plans to redevelop Royal Columbian Hospital in New Westminster.
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