TERRACE, B.C.—Residents in northern B.C. will soon have more access to health care. Construction has started on a new $622.6 million hospital in Terrace.
“This is an exciting time for people in Terrace and the region, as work is getting going on a state-of-the-art hospital,” said Adrian Dix, minister of health, in a statement. “There has been a lot of talk about a new hospital in Terrace, going back to 2010 when the request was originally made to replace the facility. I’m proud that our government recognized the need and took action, getting us to this important milestone.”
The 78-bed hospital will be more than double the size of the current facility and include private rooms. The emergency department will go from 10 treatment spaces to 20. The facility will have two trauma bays, six stretcher bays, four operating rooms and the latest diagnostic imaging equipment.
Mental-health services will be brought up to modern standards with the new and larger Seven Sisters regional mental-health facility being built on hospital grounds. There will be 25 beds at the new building, an increase from 20. The new hospital will also see an improvement in mental-health services, with 20 of the 78 beds dedicated to adult inpatient psychiatric care.
Northern Health plans to work with local and regional First Nations to ensure the new facility is culturally safe and welcoming. The project team has already created an Indigenous advisory working group, which will continue throughout the life of the project and give input into the new facility.
The new Mills Memorial Hospital will serve as the northwest region’s level-three trauma and inpatient surgery centre, providing immediate assessment, resuscitation, surgery and intensive care for injured patients. Currently, the hospital is a level-four trauma centre, meaning many patients are stabilized on site, then must be transported elsewhere.
The new hospital will be built at the north end of the current hospital grounds and is expected to be open for patients in 2025. Following completion of the new hospital the old one will be demolished for parking.
Northern Health has signed an agreement with PCL Constructors Westcoast Inc. to design and construct the project.
The project cost is being shared between the provincial government, through Northern Health, and the North West Regional Hospital District, which is contributing $110.2 million.