Bethesda ER project tender awarded


Construction on the Bethesda Hospital emergency room project can now proceed after the board of South Eastman Health awarded the contract.

On April 20, South Eastman Health announced that Penn-Co Construction from Steinbach has been awarded the tender for the building of the new emergency ward at Bethesda Hospital.

South Eastman Health chief executive officer John Stinson is pleased the $22 million project can now commence.

“Penn-Co believes they can be in the ground by June,” Stinson stated. It is anticipated the project will take about two years. “We will have a brand new emergency room in June 2014.”

Stinson noted the new emergency room will benefit the patients by not only bringing the facility into the 21st century but also help recruit and retain nurses, technicians and doctors.

“We are going to have a state-of-the-art emergency department,” Stinson noted.

Before construction can begin on the new emergency room, a temporary emergency room is being set up in the Community Services Building.

“It is going to be disruptive for patients and staff,” Stinson admits. “Our community wants this project to happen and in the end we are going to have a fabulous facility.”

Once complete the new emergency room will be a significant improvement. The current facility occupies about 2,200 square feet of Bethesda Hospital. The new emergency room will be 14,000 square feet and offer both urgent and non-urgent.

“There will be one stream for less urgent care where people can come in and be seen,” Stinson added. “There will also be a high acute area where people will be directed when they come in by ambulance.” In that area, the staff will be able to better deal with cardiac issues and situations at a higher level than in the past.

There will also be an isolation area for infectious disease quarantine and a five bed special care unit for cardiac patients that are not critical enough to need transfer to Winnipeg but require special attention.

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