Richmond business community united in call for new acute care tower
On Monday morning, Richmond-based business owners stood united in a call for Premier John Horgan to include funding for a new acute care tower at Richmond Hospital in the upcoming provincial budget.
At the official announcement, held at the Richmond Hospital, chair of the Richmond Chamber, Rob Akimow, made the thoughts of the business community clear. “Richmond has fewer than half the hospital beds than the provincial average. Our city is a net importer of jobs. That means more people come in to Richmond to work every day than leave it. Over 100,000 workers are employed here in Richmond. We’re also home to YVR, which services more than 24 million travellers annually. Over 218,000 residents call our city home. The hospital affects every one of us, and we all rely on care here.”
Akimow continued, “Safety is a real concern. The original tower was built over 50 years ago and meets only 17% of today’s seismic code. In an earthquake, we need our hospital. Serious damage here would compound any disaster. Richmond cannot wait any longer.”
Richmond Hospital Emergency physician Dr. Richard Chan added,“At Richmond Hospital, we are regularly over capacity and often there are no beds where we can send admitted patients after they are seen in the Emergency Department. And while every patient receives exemplary care here, growth in Richmond will outpace our ability to provide the type of care we want to deliver.”
The letter has been sent to Premier Horgan and cabinet on January 29. The provincial budget is slated for announcement February 20, 2018.