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Stollery Children’s Hospital in Edmonton unveils expanded pediatric operating suite

Newly-renovated section of Stollery Children’s Hospital will allow for more surgeries
WATCH ABOVE: A newly-renovated section of the Stollery Children's Hospital is open and will allow doctors to perform more surgeries than ever before. This is a huge relief to health workers and patients, many of whom say they've been waiting far too long for this. Fletcher Kent reports.

The Stollery Children’s Hospital at the University of Alberta in Edmonton is now able to perform 2,800 more surgeries per year thanks to an expanded pediatric operating suite.

Government officials were on hand Friday morning for the grand unveiling of the redeveloped space, which includes five operating rooms and two procedure rooms.

“Nothing is more stressful than having a seriously sick or injured child,” Premier Rachel Notley said in a media release. “The Stollery provides incredible care to Alberta families when their kids need it most. I’m very proud of this expansion because it means even more families will benefit from a space that was designed based on their needs.”

READ MORE: Stollery Children’s Hospital staff make surgery an unforgettable experience for Edmonton boy with autism

“When children need surgery, it’s a stressful time for young patients and their families,” said Dr. Verna Yiu, president and CEO of Alberta Health Services. “This redesigned operating suite will enable our health providers to deliver quality, patient- and family-centred care that will ease anxieties and improve both patient outcomes and patient experiences.”

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The operating rooms were designed with modern infrastructure and equipment. The upgrades follow a recent expansion in hours for the short-stay surgical unit at the Stollery. The province said the number of postponed surgeries has dropped by 93 per cent in the past year since hours were increased to 24 hours a day, three days a week.

READ MORE: Women and children to benefit from historic $54M gift to University of Alberta

In the fall, the hours at the short-stay surgical unit will expand to 24 hours per day, five days a week.

“This investment in state-of-the-art operating-room suites and procedure rooms and pre-op and recovery spaces means medical professionals can provide more specialized, compassionate care and Stollery families will receive added privacy to focus on the needs of their child,” Mike House, president and CEO of the Stollery Children’s Hospital Foundation, said in a media release Friday.

The project cost $36 million, $33.7 million of which came from the province. The other $2.5 million came from the Stollery Children’s Hospital Foundation. It took 29 months to complete the project.

More than 9,500 surgeries were performed at the Stollery between April 1, 2015 and March 31, 2016.