Glen Abernethy: Stanton Territorial Hospital – First Patient Day

Yellowknife — May 27, 2019
Ministers' Statements and Speeches

Mr. Speaker, today marks a major milestone for Health Care delivery in the Northwest Territories. On May 26, 2019 we began accepting patients at the new Stanton Territorial Hospital, and implemented a detailed patient move plan to bring patients from the old Stanton hospital to our brand new facility.

 I am pleased to report that our patient transfer was successful, and that the new Stanton Territorial Hospital is now providing health services and care to residents. Our team successfully transferred 55 patients at approximately three minute intervals over three hours. These transfers were provided by porters and Health Care staff through an above ground tunnel built specifically for this move to ensure patient safety and privacy. Our partners from Health Care Relocations, who are experts in this area, provided us with guidance on this elaborate move process and also helped us through the facility activation phase of our  new territorial hospital.

 Having a brand new hospital that provides improved patient care requires that our entire health care team of professionals are knowledgeable and confident in their new work environment. This process is called Facility Activation and was another crucial milestone for the Stanton Hospital Project. Led by the Stanton Renewal team, dedicated hospital staff and our P3 partner Dexterra, Facility Activation is the process for making sure that everything from work stations, machines, equipment and the overall flow for patients and staff work as they need to. I can tell you that this is no small feat and that countless hours and work have gone into making the new hospital, from top to bottom, as ready as it possibly can be to provide improved patient experience and care.

 Mr. Speaker, it’s one thing to say that things are better and nicer at the new hospital, but I want to take a moment and provide a few highlights and examples of how the new Stanton Territorial hospital will help us provide residents with the best patient care we can, both now and well into the future.

 Our new hospital is twice the size of the old facility, and houses new systems and features on every floor that make it possible for us to support the health and wellness of patients as never before.

 

The new hospital has:

 

    • 100 single in-patient rooms; A significant expansion of the Emergency Department, Ambulatory Care Centre and Intensive Care Unit;
    • Operating rooms that are double the size and equipped with surgical booms; these structures provide equipment support which is something we didn’t have in our old hospital;
    • A secure dedicated outdoor space especially for mental health patients;
    • A designated non-denominational Sacred Space for spiritual ceremonies that can support smudging ceremonies;
    • An expanded cafeteria featuring northern artwork, lots of natural light and a living green wall;
    • Upgrades including a pneumatic tube system, patient lifts, a nurse call system, integrated bedside terminals and wifi;
    • A therapeutic garden space complete with a ceremonial fire pit, playground area and natural flora and fauna which is completely wheelchair accessible;
    • Wood Pellet boilers reducing greenhouse gas emissions and making the new hospital more energy efficient;
    • Dedicated elevators for public which are separate from elevators for patients and staff, to enhance privacy and mobility throughout the facility; and
    •  375 parking stalls, almost double the 188 that were available for staff and public at the old hospital.

These are just some of the highlights of our new territorial hospital. It has also been designed to maximize natural light throughout and to be able to grow and adapt to our future health care needs. It is a beautiful facility that will welcome patients, their loved ones, and staff from throughout the North.

 It should come as no surprise that there has been a great deal of public interest in the new facility. Earlier this month we escorted over 250 guests on tours of the new hospital. Unfortunately we weren’t able to accommodate all requests, but we plan to make videos available that will feature all of our program and service areas. These will be available on the Stanton renewal website later this summer.

 I also want to thank my MLA colleagues and all those who shared information on changes in service in and around our first patient day. This allowed our staff and patients to move into the new facility as efficiently as possible and prioritized emergency and labour services.  As is the case whenever you move into a brand new facility, we know that there will be some hiccups as staff and patients get used to our new hospital. During these early days of operation, staff will be working diligently to minimize any inconvenience wherever possible and to ensure that we can deliver the best service possible

 Mr. Speaker, later this summer we will hold a grand opening event for the new Stanton Territorial Hospital.  It will be an opportunity to thank all of our staff, partners, stakeholders and volunteers who have been involved in making this project a success and a chance to celebrate our new hospital as a key part of how we hope to achieve our goal of Best Health, Best Care for a Better Future.

 Thank you Mr. Speaker.