It’s years later than originally planned, but the new Women’s Hospital at Health Sciences Centre officially has an opening date.
The $232.9 million facility was set to open in 2016, but the date was set back by a series of delays, including the collapse of shoring on Sherbrook Street after a major rainstorm in 2012, a fire in an adjacent building in 2013, and unforeseen problems with electrical and plumbing work.
At a press conference Thursday , Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister said the state-of-the-art hospital at 665 William Ave. would open Dec. 1.
“The new HSC Women’s Hospital is the largest capital health project in Manitoba’s history and reflects our government’s continued commitment to improving Manitoba’s health-care system, not just for today but for the future,” the premier said in a release.
“This new facility will help the dedicated staff at Health Sciences Centre provide the highest possible standard of care to women, their babies and families for generations to come.”
While construction of the 388,500-sq.-ft.hospital was substantially completed in February, Health, Seniors and Active Living Minister Cameron Friesen said time was needed to move in new equipment and have staff trained in the new space.
“This building uses modern design standards that will improve work flow for staff, and privacy and comfort for patients and their families,” said Friesen in the release.
“It also incorporates security features and new technology that will enhance care and enable specialized care to be provided remotely, allowing some patients to remain or return closer to home while continuing to be cared for by incredibly skilled staff.”
The hospital will house the inpatient and outpatient obstetrical, surgical and medical services currently provided at the Women’s Pavilion at 735 Notre Dame Ave, which will be converted into a new 28-bed acute stroke unit once the new space opens.
The Winnipeg Regional Health Authority has previously said the new hospital — which is three times bigger than the old facility — will bring both new technologies and more space for mothers.
Health Sciences Centre provides the vast majority of hospital-based pediatric care and acute gynecologic surgical procedures in the province and is one of two city hospitals that deliver newborns and provide obstetrical services.