Comox Valley hospital officially opens; helipad not yet certified

Comox Valley hospital officially opens; helipad not yet certified

With staff, board members, volunteers, members of the community and Premier John Horgan on hand, the new Comox Valley campus of the North Island Hospital officially opened Tuesday afternoon.

“We have the opportunity to follow through on the work of previous governments. We’re going to ensure the new government … makes sure that the public services that people depend on here in the Courtenay-Comox region are provided in a state-of-the-art, world-class facility,” noted Horgan.

Courtenay-Comox MLA Ronna-Rae Leonard added the campus is something the community has supported from the outset.

“Our families and loved ones will benefit from the enhanced facilities and improvements to patient care.”

The 153-bed Comox Valley campus is part of the North Island Hospitals Project, which includes a 95-bed facility in Campbell River.

The combined cost of the project is $606.2 million, with the project cost-shared through a 60/40 split between the provincial government and the Comox Strathcona Regional Hospital District.

While both hospitals have been operational since the fall, the helipads at both facilities are not certified for operation.

Horgan told media afterward the province is awaiting Transport Canada’s deliberations on what classification will be given to both facilities.

“If by chance, they rule against the configuration as it exists today, we’ll find other mechanisms to ensure health care is not compromised. I’m hopeful that Transport Canada will find in favour of the two hospitals and the plan that they have in place, but if they don’t, there are secondary plans and we’ll implement those.”

Chief Project Officer of the North Island Hospitals Project Tom Sparrow, who was also at the official opening, said he’s hoping to receive the full certification within the next month.

“In the future, we need to work much more closely with our partners at Transport Canada to ensure that some of these processes are dealt with well in advance so we’re not dealing with situations like this on opening day.”

When asked about the status of the long-term care and hospice situation in the Valley, Horgan responded that Island Health is working on a solution.

“We need to ensure we don’t just have quality care for people who are coming looking to get better, but we need to make sure we have end-of-life care in not just in Campbell River and Comox, but in both communities. I’m committed to working with Minister Dix and Island Health to make sure we can do that.”

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Comox Valley hospital officially opens; helipad not yet certified

Premier John Horgan officially opens the new North Island Hospital Comox Valley campus Tuesday afternoon in Courtenay. Photo by Erin Haluschak

Just Posted

The Vancouver Island marmot is an endangered species. Pictured here, a marmot at Mount Washington. (Black Press file)
VIDEO: ‘Frisky’ Vancouver Island marmots caught on camera

Marmots are catching the eye of researchers when caught on security cameras getting ‘quite frisky’

Karilyn, right, with her older sister, Sabrina. Both siblings are members of the YANA family, after being helped by the community organization on separate occasions. Photo supplied
Siblings both members of the YANA family

Comox Valley non-profit helped Geiger family on separate occasions

A second-floor balcony continues to smoulder after a fire extinguisher was used to get a small balcony fire under control at the Washington Inn Apartments. Brian Hayward, who lives on the third floor, was alerted to the fire by the smell of smoke wafting into his apartment. Photo by Brian Hayward.
Courtenay firefighters respond to balcony fire at Washington Inn Apartments

Firefighters were called out to the Washington Inn Apartments Sunday, April 17,… Continue reading

RCMP forensics investigators scour the site north of Highland School in Comox, where multiple people were stabbed during a party Saturday night, April 16. Photo by Terry Farrell
UPDATED: Multiple stabbings at Comox bush party

Three youths hospitalized after an assault near Highland Secondary

Cumberland is surrounded by trees — and logging. Its council is supporting a call to stop old-growth logging in vulnerable areas of the province such as Fairy Creek. Photo by Mike Chouinard
Cumberland backs request to save B.C.’s old-growth forests

The Comox Youth Climate Council is asking local governments to take stand

In this image from NASA, NASA’s experimental Mars helicopter Ingenuity lands on the surface of Mars Monday, April 19, 2021. The little 4-pound helicopter rose from the dusty red surface into the thin Martian air Monday, achieving the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (NASA via AP)
VIDEO: NASA’s Mars helicopter takes flight, 1st for another planet

The $85 million helicopter demo was considered high risk, yet high reward

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

The following is a list of restaurants offering take-out and patio dining. ADOBE STOCK IMAGE
List of Comox Valley restaurants offering take-out, patio dining options

Restaurants in the Comox Valley continue to adapt to government-imposed restrictions in… Continue reading

Families of two of three workers killed in a train derailment near Field, B.C., in 2019 have filed lawsuits accusing Canadian Pacific of gross negligence. The derailment sent 99 grain cars and two locomotives off the tracks. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Families of workers killed in Field train derailment allege negligence in lawsuit

Lawsuits allege the workers weren’t provided a safe work environment

(New Westminster Police)
4 youth arrested after 30-person brawl in New Westminster leaves 1 seriously injured

Police are looking for witnesses who saw the incident take place

South Surrey’s Paul Cottrell, who works with the DFO, tows a grey whale out of Semiahmoo Bay Sunday. (Contributed photo)
Dead whale floating near White Rock towed to shore for necropsy

Animal has been dead since at least April 15

Wickaninnish (Clifford Atleo) plays the drum while singing the Nuu-chah-nulth song on the court steps in Vancouver In a picture from April 2018. Photo credit, Melody Charlie.
Five western Vancouver Island First Nations celebrate legal fishing victory

Court ruling confirms Nuu-chah-nulth fishing rights in case dating back to 2003

Sunday’s storm rocked one of the ferries crossing Kootenay Lake. Photo: Dirk Jonker
VIDEO: Storm makes for wild ferry ride across Kootenay Lake

The video was captured by ferry employee Dirk Jonker

Dr. Bonnie Henry gives her daily media briefing regarding Covid-19 for the province of British Columbia in Victoria, B.C, Monday, December 7, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Toddler marks youngest British Columbian to die related to COVID-19

Child one of eight people to die from virus this weekend

Most Read