August 18, 2008

New Seven Oaks Emergency Department Opens

Concordia ED redevelopment near completion; Vic ED expansion to begin this fall

New Seven Oaks Emergency Department Opens

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Expanded, leading-edge emergency services at Seven Oaks General Hospital will significantly enhance care for patients and their families, Health Minister Theresa Oswald said at the official opening of the hospital’s new $14-million emergency department.

"This state-of-the-art department was designed to ensure we can provide our citizens with the best emergency care possible," Oswald said. "This expanded emergency department means improved care for patients and their families, and a better work environment for our health-care professionals."
The redeveloped new department, which will welcome its first patients tomorrow, includes:

  • more space – almost 20,000 square feet, double the current footprint of 9,700 square feet;

  • more patient care spaces – a total of 31, nearly double the current 16 spaces;

  • more monitored patient care spaces – 16 monitored up from the current six;

  • three interior ambulance bays – up from the current two that require patients be disembarked from the ambulance indoors;

  • a decontamination room – which can be utilized following a chemical spill or similar exposure – as well as an isolation room for patients suspected of suffering from an airborne illness such as SARS; and

  • an electronic patient monitoring system that will allow staff to access patient information from various locations throughout the department.

The new emergency department will benefit the environment as much as it does its patients, Oswald said. The Seven Oaks ED is registered as a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Commercial Interiors project. Water and energy use will be cut dramatically thanks to innovative green design elements including:

  • an integrated water management strategy that will reuse water from the hospital's dialysis unit to supply water to flush toilets, cutting potable water use by 50 percent;

  • solar walls on the south side of the ambulance garage to cut energy costs by pre-heating fresh air entering the ventilation system using passive solar energy during the winter months;

  • a comprehensive day-lighting strategy to reduce energy demands on artificial light and provide natural light deep into the core of the ED.

The emergency department will feature more comfortable, private surroundings for patients and their families, with larger exam and treatment cubicles as well as a larger, more comfortable waiting room, and walls between patient cubicles.

The hospital's new Emergency Department Information System (EDIS) will automate functions such as triage, patient tracking, test results, room status, documentation and discharge. Fast, easy access to clinical information will improve patient flow through the departments.

"We extend sincere appreciation to the Government of Manitoba for their support and the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority for their assistance in making this crucial innovative facility a reality," said Stuart Greenfield, chair of the Seven Oaks Hospital Board of Trustees. "We are extremely grateful to Jim Gauthier, honourary campaign chair and John and Bonnie Buhler for their generous support and recognition of the need for a modern emergency department for the citizens of north Winnipeg."
Oswald noted the opening of the new Seven Oaks emergency department comes just a few weeks after the completion of the first phase of the redevelopment of the emergency department at Concordia Hospital.  Construction of the new Concordia ED will be completed and the facility opened to the public this fall.  Construction of the Victoria General Hospital will begin by end of year.

"These new facilities, with their natural light and more comfortable patient and family areas will help our dedicated team of physicians, nurses and allied health professionals better meet the varying needs of our patients," said Jan Currie, WRHA vice-president and chief nursing officer.

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