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WRHA announces details for next phase of health service consolidation

Winnipeg Regional Health Authority
Posted Thursday, May 31, 2018

Building upon accomplishments already realized through the implementation of Phase I of our Healing our Health System plan, the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority (WRHA) announced details and timelines today for changes coming to the system during Phase II of the plan. The consolidation of health services is designed to improve wait times, ensure access to timely care for patients and support enhanced work environments for our staff.

"We have seen significant improvement already in the past six months since we began consolidation," said RĂ©al Cloutier, interim chief executive officer of the WRHA. "Overall we've seen a 15 per cent decrease in ED wait times year over year with our plan less than half-realized. We need to continue with our efforts and momentum to see further, bolder progress and improvement."

A number of changes took place across the region during Phase I including:

The sequenced implementation of Phase II changes began earlier this month with the opening of Grace Hospital's new emergency department. The re-designed department will treat more than 60,000 patients per year and supports Grace Hospital in its role as the region's third acute care site, in addition to Health Sciences Centre Winnipeg (HSC) and St. Boniface Hospital.

Phase II will also see important renovations made to enhance the emergency departments at both HSC and St. Boniface Hospital. These renovations will be completed prior to the closure of Concordia Hospital's emergency department in June 2019 and the conversion of Seven Oaks General Hospital's emergency department to an urgent care centre in September, 2019.

These capital investments will increase emergency department capacity and improve treatment spaces. They will also concentrate resources - including staffing and specialized equipment - to accommodate more patients while ensuring timely access to the right care.

The region continues to pursue a detailed plan with Concordia Hospital to identify the health services that may occupy the Concordia emergency department space.

Phase II planning was informed by consultations with clinical leadership and health care staff, the George and Fay Yee Centre for Healthcare Innovation Interim Evaluation of Phase I and the recommendations of the Wait Times Reduction Task Force Report. Several aspects of the Phase II plans and targeted timelines were adjusted as a direct response to this feedback.

Phase II highlights offered today included a timeline for the consolidation of mental health Services at Victoria Hospital (complemented by existing resources at HSC and St. Boniface Hospital). The consolidation of in-patient mental health services across the region is expected to be complete within winter 2018 and will see 52 beds relocated to Victoria Hospital to expand on-site treatment and counselling spaces and improve on-site access to psychiatrists.

Summary of other changes coming in Phase II

Enhancement of Cardiac Services

Community Intravenous Program

Emergency Departments

Intensive Care Units (ICU)

Medicine

Mental Health

Surgery