British Columbia’s brand new, state-of-the-art Dawson Creek and District hospital will be built at 11401-8th St., on the northwest corner of the nearby Northern Lights College campus.
“I am proud to announce that the government has approved the business plan, and it is now full speed ahead for one of the highest-priority health capital projects in the North,” said Adrian Dix, Minister of Health.
The new $377.86 million hospital will be approximately 19,400 square metres (209,000 square feet) and will have 70 beds, an increase of 24, all of which will be in single rooms with ensuite washrooms.
“It’s a big day for the people of Dawson Creek – one that is a long, long, long time coming,” Dix said. “During the business planning stage, it became clear that Dawson Creek needed more than a redevelopment and expansion. We are delivering a new, modern hospital on a standalone site, a project that will increase necessary services, help retain health-care professionals and bring jobs to the region. The South Peace region, its patients and health-care workers deserve nothing less.”
A new emergency department will be double the size of the existing one, with treatment spaces increasing from 10 to 13. The existing emergency department has approximately 18,000 visits a year. The new emergency department will be able to accommodate approximately 25,000 visits a year.
Other features will include:
- Space for a laboratory and diagnostic imaging will also be part of the new facility.
- A maternity unit including labour, delivery recovery and post-partum rooms and a nursery.
- Mental health service delivery will be brought up to modern standards with a new inpatient suite and an increase of beds from 15 to 18.
- There will also be a non-denominational spiritual room for use by people of all faiths and cultures.
The new hospital will continue to provide a range of surgical services as well as chemotherapy, ambulatory care, radiology, clinical support and pharmacy services.
The project cost will be shared by the provincial government, through Northern Health, and the Peace River Regional Hospital District. Approximately 1,500 direct jobs and 900 indirect jobs will be created during construction.
Future use of the current site will be determined after the new hospital is finished and in operation.
With government approval of the business plan, the project will now proceed to procurement. Construction is expected to begin late 2021 and the new hospital is anticipated to be open to patients in fall 2025.
Northern Health has identified the hospital for renewal since 2008. The Dawson Creek and District Hospital Master Program and Master Plan was completed in December 2013. Northern Health submitted a concept plan for a redeveloped hospital in September 2015, but it did not move forward. Northern Health provided an updated plan in March 2018, which was approved by government in May 2018.