Replace the Acute Care (North) Tower at Richmond Hospital.
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One of the hallmarks of a government with integrity is its willingness to fulfill campaign promises. Campaign promise fulfillment shows constituents that their politicians are truthful and in touch with what is reasonable and actionable. This last election cycle – like all – was filled with campaign promises. One promise struck a chord with many voters – the commitment to building a new, acute care tower at Richmond Hospital. Our elected officials promised that this would be included in British Columbia’s 2018 provincial budget.
There is no debate – our community is in dire need of a new hospital. The old acute care tower is 50 years old and not built to standard code. We have known this for over a decade. Per the 2005 seismic report of the hospital, the north acute care tower would likely collapse, or partially collapse with “moderate shaking.” This fact was reiterated to Vancouver Coastal Health in a 2011 report. Yet, nothing - under the former BC Liberal government - had been done to remedy this issue, placing dozens of patients at risk and compromising the quality of care patients receive. Meanwhile, there is $27 million sitting in trust with the Richmond Hospital Foundation and half of those donations are dependent on a 2020 construction start date. If shovels are not in the ground by this deadline, the money may be rescinded.
The Richmond Hospital was built to accommodate a population of 50,000; today, it serves roughly 218,000. The population is expected reach 280,000 by 2040. Sadly, the hospital has not kept up with the population increases. Few additions and renovations have taken place over the past five decades, resulting in a hospital that is severely over-capacity. The esteemed hospital staff are doing their best to serve patients, but it is evident that they are showing signs of fatigue and burnout due to overcrowding. Again, this compromises the quality of care patients receive, not to mention diminishing the quality of life of hospital workers. Is it no wonder that Richmond Hospital Emergency Department continues to have some of the longest wait times in the region?
After 16 years of ineffectual leadership by the BC Liberal government, we need our new BC NDP government to make good on their commitment to build a new acute care tower at Richmond Hospital and ensure that the costs are included in the 2018 provincial budget. We deserve to have our basic health care needs met and campaign promises fulfilled. ~ Jack Trovato
We, the undersigned, citizens of the City of Richmond, are concerned about the seismically unsafe acute care tower at Richmond Hospital. Furthermore, this unsound facility does not meet the emerging needs of our growing community.
We petition the Provincial Government of British Columbia to make good on their commitment to:
- Build a new acute care tower at Richmond Hospital, and;
- Ensure that the costs are included in the 2018 provincial budget.
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