Wednesday, 13 February 2013 05:37

Covered walkway will make visits to Swift Current hospital a little easier

Written by  Matthew Liebenberg
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After four months of construction activities the main entrance at the Cypress Regional Hospital in Swift Current is again open to the public.

The concrete pathway leading up to the entrance has been replaced with a covered walkway that will provide patients and visitors with protection against inclement weather and climate controlled access as they arrive at the main entrance.
The covered walkway opened to the public on Feb. 11. The project has been a joint initiative between the Cypress Health Region and the Dr. Noble Irwin Regional Healthcare Foundation.
Clay Thompson, the Healthcare Foundation’s executive director, said total project cost is over $300,000 but the new structure’s benefit is beyond the cost of its construction.
“It can be invaluable to those that are using it,” he observed.
The project became a reality as a result of a significant financial contribution to the Healthcare Foundation from the estate of the late Jessie Alberta Grant of Swift Current.
“At the time that we were accepting that gift we were talking with the health region and hospital staff as to what was needed,” Thompson recalled. “This came through as a very large priority that was likely going to be unfilled and so we were very happy that we can help out.”
This project is quite different from other Healthcare Foundation initiatives that have resulted in the installation of equipment such as dialysis machines and heart monitors in health facilities across Cypress Health Region.
“This is front and centre … the first thing you're going to see when you come up to the hospital,” he said. “So it is very high profile for us and for health care and it's important for us to give recognition for Ms. Grant, which we will do at our formal grand opening.”
The date for the formal opening of the new covered walkway must still be determined, but in the meantime the final detail work on the structure will be completed.
Bryce Martin, the Cypress Health Region’s executive director for communications, said the walkway is around 95 per cent complete.
“There's nothing standing in the way of using the walkway and we're really pleased to open it up,” he noted.
Contractors are waiting for a piece of equipment to bend the metal that will be used to finish the roof detail and some work on the inside must be completed. A safety fence will remain in place around the walkway until the roof work is done.
According to Martin a number of design elements were the result of input from patient-family representatives. These include handrails along the sides of the walkway, a rubberized floor surface to make it less slippery and changes to the slope of the walkway.
Seating must still be installed inside the walkway where people can wait when they are dropped off by family or until they are picked up. There will also be wheelchairs available inside the walkway entrance to assist people with mobility problems.
“It will indeed provide a lot of benefits for patients,” Martin said. “We’re very grateful for the Foundation and to the estate and we'll move forward with this new addition to the hospital.”

Read 4011 times Last modified on Wednesday, 13 February 2013 08:03

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