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In April, St. Paul’s Hospital announced that it will be moving to a new, much larger site in the False Creek Flats, north of the Pacific Central train station. The move is more than physical— St. Paul’s intends to become less of a hospital to care for acutely sick people, and more of a centre to help people stay healthy. Primary care, instead of hospital stays and Emergency Department visits.
This is a huge change. St. Paul’s famously has specialized care— for example heart, HIV— that serve all of British Columbia. Yet for years, residents of the West End fought a move, fearing that having to travel an extra ten minutes threatened their lives, although hospital-acquired infections are more likely to spread in the existing hospital’s shared rooms. Those fears seem to have faded, but what facilities will St. Paul’s keep in the West End? What will happen to the existing buildings, some over 100 years old? Might Mount St. Joseph Hospital, also run by the Catholic charity Providence Health Care, be merged into St. Paul’s?
And what are the opportunities in the new location? A facility closer to a core population of the poor in the Downtown Eastside, and a more central location for residents of Vancouver’s East Side. Better care for the 60% of patients who come from outside Vancouver. Potential connections with the robust food service facilities that most people don’t realize are located in The Flats. A billion dollars for the facility, but less sickness and greater health for BC’s growing— and aging— population?
Briefing us on the changes are Darlene MacKinnon, RN, the redevelopment project’s Chief Clinical Planner, and Neil MacConnell, Chief Project Officer.
Then it’s your turn to question, observe, and offer your perspective and opinion. Please feel free to bring your lunch for this free event.