SURREY - With only 365 more days to go before the new emergency department at Surrey Memorial Hospital opens to patients, all eyes are looking up as the eight-floor Critical Care Tower gets "topped off".
This construction milestone marks the pouring of the last concrete for the highest level of the building. "Topping " is a long-standing tradition in most large-scale capital projects.
With an investment of $512 million, this is one of British Columbia's largest capital investments in health care to date. It will include the construction of a new emergency department, replacing one of Canada's busiest, and a new 48-bed neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) that will serve high-risk babies and families from all over B.C. Also part of the redevelopment are expanded intensive-care and high-acuity units.
There will also be stronger research and academic affiliations, including a Clinical Academic Campus in partnership with the University of British Columbia to train and teach the doctors and clinicians of tomorrow.
The new emergency department will be bolstered by the opening of the rest of the eight-floor tower in 2014. With 151 new beds being added to Surrey Memorial, the total number of beds will be 650, increasing capacity by 30 per cent.
The Surrey Memorial Hospital Foundation will also provide $15 million in funding for new equipment. This outstanding investment will enable Fraser Health to deliver better health care for the people and communities of Surrey and British Columbia as a whole.
The Surrey Memorial Hospital redevelopment project is expected to generate around 3,300-construction jobs, in addition to hundreds of positions for additional doctors and nurses to staff the tower.
The need for a new emergency department and tertiary perinatal centre at Surrey Memorial was first set out in the Surrey Health Services Capacity Initiative (SHSCI), endorsed by government in December 2005. Also recommended in the report was a new outpatient facility to provide a full range of outpatient-care services and a primary health-care clinic. The $237-million Jim Pattison Outpatient Care and Surgery Centre opened June 2011.
Minister of Health Dr. Margaret MacDiarmid -
"It is wonderful to see the vision and hard work of so many come to life with the topping of the Critical Care Tower at Surrey Memorial Hospital. Generations of families will benefit from the 650 permanent health-care jobs, including 50 new physician positions. This new tower will lead to better patient care for the people of Surrey for many years to come."
MLA for Surrey-Tynehead Dave S. Hayer -
"Today represents an exciting milestone in health-care delivery in the region. This brings us one step closer to an expanded Surrey Memorial Hospital, something I have worked for my entire time as an MLA. Surrey is expected to soon be the largest city in B.C., and this expansion ensures we can continue to meet the demand for quality care."
Dr. Nigel Murray, president and CEO of Fraser Health -
"Our vision was to create a world-class health campus and model medical community that would serve the Fraser Health Region. With the topping of the Critical Care Tower, our dream is one step closer to becoming a reality. The redevelopment and expansion of Surrey Memorial Hospital will enable us to better address the challenging health-care needs of our constantly evolving and growing communities."
Jane Adams, Surrey Memorial Hospital Foundation president and CEO -
"Considering all the features of the new emergency centre, including a children's ER, the significance of this project is immense. The Critical Care Tower development will bring innovation to our health care, which is why the foundation has committed to raise 20 per cent of the equipment budget for this expansion."
Media Relations Manager
Ministry of Health
250 952-1887 (media line)
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