- The $1.3 billion projects have expanded E.R. and a new cancer treatment center.
- The premier took part in a sod-turning ceremony to mark the start of an extensive advancement to the existing facility.
British Columbia’s hospital system is “teetering” and needs more federal funding; Premier John Horgan said he managed recent temporary ward shutdowns at hospitals in rural communities.
Such closures have left citizens “confused,” Horgan said Monday at a sod-turning ceremony marking the beginning of the long-awaited upgrade of Burnaby Hospital in Metro Vancouver.
Horgan said the continued COVID-19 outbreak had impacted hospital staffing across B.C., and efforts to increase federal healthcare funding to the regions and territories have been fruitless.
“What my message to British Columbians is [is that] the system is dynamic, but the system is teetering, and we need the support,” he said, adding the premiers and territorial leaders would lobby the federal government for increased funding at meetings in Victoria in July.
B.C. Liberal Leader Kevin Falcon said Horgan’s healthcare comments missed the mark, as he emphasized the New Democrat government’s plan to spend $789 million to tear down and replace the Royal B.C. Museum.
“Can the premier not see the absurdity of falling forward with his billion-dollar vanity museum project when emergency rooms are closing down and one out of five British Columbians cannot even access a family doctor?” Falcon said.
Horgan said what is occurring in the health sector is also happening in other workplaces.
“I know British Columbians are baffled and concerned when we have shutdowns of emergency rooms for brief periods because of staff shortages,” he said. “That’s a direct consequence of appropriate replies to a global pandemic. We see shortages not just in our healthcare sectors but right across the economy.”
Source – cbc.ca