The new ICU at the East Kootenay Regional Hospital officially received it’s first patients on Thursday after the facility finished construction in February.
The $20 million project, funded by provincial and regional governments, features six beds, two of which are for high-acuity care which are for patients who require more care than a standard inpatient ward but less than the ICU.
AJ Brekke, the Director, Emergency and Trauma Services with Interior Health, says the new ICU—a 787 square-metre addition to the northeast side of the EKRH—allows IH staff to provide patient care in a space that isn’t as confined as the old ICU location.
“Staff and physicians of the ICU have always provided excellent care yet their existing space was too small and didn’t allow for adequate confidentiality and privacy for our patients,” said Brekke. “The new space is large, airy, and full of natural light, colors and wood tones.
“With the completion of the new space there is now ample room for all the ICU equipment and patients belongings all the while allowing staff to do what they do best—provide first class care to the patients of the East Kootenay. Today was an amazing day for the EKRH staff.”
In addition to the ICU facility, the EKRH also underwent a major electrical upgrade which improves power supply to the entire hospital, optimizes the systems performance and provides capacity to expand for future power needs.
IH staff are currently planning to develop the old ICU space on the third floor of the EKRH into a paediatric space.
According to Kootenay East MLA Bill Bennett’s remarks during an official ribbon-cutting ceremony in February, the projects were completed ahead of schedule and under budget.