By Marcia Love
Plans for the construction of the new integrated healthcare facility in Leader have moved into the next phase, with a call for construction tenders released.
Cypress Health Region received Ministry of Health approval to release the tender documents for the construction on Sept. 15.
This will allow potential general contractors to finalize their construction proposal, including the overall project cost, timelines for completion, and strategies for reaching the objectives of the integrated facility’s model of care.
The bids will be publicly opened on Oct. 16, the health region said. They will be reviewed and evaluated by the project team, which will be followed by an approximate one- to two-week timeline for the Ministry of Health and Cypress Health Region to approve and award the contract. Discussions with the successful general contractor regarding the next steps will begin immediately after the award is completed.
Construction will then begin in early November, the health region reported. This will consist of an addition to the existing Western Senior Citizens Home and related renovations to the building.
The project will include 11 universal care unit treatment rooms. The physicians, nurse practitioner, public health, community and mental health, home care, and visiting professional services will be located in this area. According to the health region, the programming for this area is based on a new model of care which encourages deeper collaboration between health providers and reduces the amount of locations one has to travel in order to receive various health services.
It also includes a therapies suite, five acute care inpatient rooms, one isolation acute care room — which is a new service not currently available at the Leader Hospital — one trauma/emergency bed, laboratory and X-ray services, and one family overnight suite.
A new 12-bed long-term care wing will be constructed to replace an existing Western Seniors Citizens Home wing, which will be renovated to provide other services in the integrated facility.
During the construction of the new long-term care wing, affected residents will be temporarily relocated to a dedicated area of the Leader Hospital.
Brenda Schwan, vice president of human resources and capital projects for Cypress Health Region, said Leader and area residents can look forward to having all health services provided in one place.
“Currently we have services between primary health care, the hospital, long-term care, and EMS, so this provides an opportunity to have everything under one roof,” she said.
The new Southwest Integrated Healthcare Facility in Maple Creek is serving as a good example of some of the improvements Leader can look forward to.
“We’ve actually had some staff from Leader come down to Maple Creek and look at the universal care unit and look at their rooms and the set up of the rooms, where the equipment is, nurse-call communication systems on the wall and things like that,” explained Schwan. “(They’ve been) learning from that facility as to what we can do for the Leader one.”
Construction is expected to be completed on the new health facility in Leader by the summer of 2017.