The Nanaimo Regional Hospital District has confirmed the five ways it would like to expand in the future.
Plans aim for a new cancer centre, a new high acuity unit, and replacing the patient tower. They would also add a new long-term care facility for the region, and a cardiac catheterization lab. The projects were already identified in their budget, but the confirmation takes the next steps in their becoming reality.
Hospital District Chair Ian Thorpe says these projects are vital to providing essential healthcare services to all residents north of the Malahat.
“The NRHD is committed to funding its share towards these projects,” says Thorpe. “To meet this commitment, we will consider many factors including residents’ ability to support the tax increases needed and advocate for the Province of BC to fund a greater share of the costs.”
The Board is advocating that the province cover all of the funds for the cancer centre, and suggest the Hospital District will foot 40-percent of the bill for the other four projects. They say that 40-percent is consistent with funding models from other capital projects.
The next steps are preparing a formal proposal for the projects to the province. A committee with the hospital will flush out the details with help from First Nations, community members, and other stakeholders to determine the best path to follow.
In a release the hospital says there is a discrepancy between the standard of care between the Victoria area and the rest of the island, which these projects hope to address.
The release says, “The strategy will highlight the stark difference in the standard of healthcare between the south island and the central/north island regions and why these projects need to be a provincial priority to close this gap.”