The new 243-bed Grande Prairie Regional Hospital (GPRH) is scheduled to open to the public Dec. 4, Alberta Health and Alberta Health Services (AHS) announced.
AHS worked with Alberta Infrastructure on the second phase of the hospital’s construction, involving the development of a 28-bed mental health unit and a 32-bed medical unit. Construction was completed this summer. As with the initial phase of new hospital construction, operational planning and commissioning followed.
All acute clinical programing in Grande Prairie will be located at the new hospital. The city’s existing Queen Elizabeth II (QEII) Hospital will continue to provide healthcare services, although the exact scope of these services has yet to be determined.
“I share area residents’ excitement about the opening of the new hospital this December,” said Travis Toews, MLA for Grande Prairie-Wapiti. “This new facility brings new and expanded healthcare services to the region, including radiation therapy. This means cancer patients requiring this treatment will be able to receive it closer to home.”
The hospital’s cancer centre includes two radiation vaults, making Grande Prairie the fifth city in Alberta to offer radiation therapy and the first in the north. A wide range of other healthcare services will be provided at the new hospital, including surgery, critical care and emergency services. The facility will have only single inpatient rooms, including medical, surgical and rehabilitation, intensive care, cardiac care, obstetrics, neonatal intensive care and pediatric beds. Commissioning also includes the implementation of AHS’ new Connect Care provincial health information network.
“I’m very pleased Grande Prairie Regional Hospital will be opening soon and all at once,” added Tracy Allard, MLA for Grande Prairie. “This will mean no duplication of services between the two sites, eliminating the need to move patients between the new hospital and the QEII. It’s what’s best for area residents. The completion of the new hospital was a top priority for residents during the last election, and I am pleased to celebrate the opening of this long-awaited facility and the provision of services to Grande Prairie and area.”
The building also includes an education facility in partnership with Grande Prairie Regional College, for the training of nurses and other healthcare professionals.
The $850-million facility will offer tremendous benefit to patients and their families, said Stacy Greening, AHS Senior Operating Officer for Grande Prairie.
“AHS took possession of the new facility last summer and our teams have been working hard ordering and installing equipment and furniture, testing and training staff on the new building and medical systems, and completing a detailed cleaning of the whole building,” Greening says. “This stage of the project is crucial as it ensures everything is safe and working properly before being used to provide patient care.”
The hospital parkade includes 1,100 parking stalls for staff and public, with an additional 250 surface stalls available onsite.
“The new hospital will be more than a new space with new equipment,” says Greening. “It will be about providing care that is meaningful and important to people. We want to make sure everyone feels safe, welcome, included and respected at the hospital, regardless of their reasons for being there.”
Following the fallout with the initial construction manager in mid-2018, the government hired Clark Builders in November of 2018 to take over the project.
Featured image: (Grande Prairie Regional Hospital Foundation)