The Government of Alberta announces a major $100 million first phase expansion of the Red Deer Hospital. (Photo Courtesy: Government of Alberta)

Premier, health minister announces first phase of Red Deer Hospital expansion

Alberta government is committing $100 million to begin expansion

The Government of Alberta announced a $100 million first phase expansion of the Red Deer Hospital.

“For years, residents of central Alberta and Red Deer have been calling for their hospital to be expanded. Our government is the first to listen. I’m proud to announce funding will be made available as part of Budget 2020 for the first phase of the Red Deer hospital expansion,” Premier Jason Kenney said in a release.

The Red Deer Regional Hospital Centre is the busiest hospital outside Edmonton and Calgary and has operated beyond its design capacity for many years. The funding announced in Red Deer will expedite work to finalize the project scope, construction schedule, operating budget, and expansion of health care services at the facility.

“This initial $100-million commitment is our promise to Red Deer that we will get this done right, and as soon as possible,” Tyler Shandro, minister of health, said.

Shandro also said during a press release that the long-sought after cardiac catheterization lab will be part of the $100 million commitment.

“Designing, planning and building health infrastructure provides good jobs for Albertans. We are committed to getting the front-end work of this project right so that the people of Red Deer and surrounding areas have a hospital that meets their needs.”

Tara Veer, mayor, City of Red Deer said the Red Deer hospital is one of the busiest in Alberta.

“Today’s announcement by the Government of Alberta responds to this longstanding infrastructure need of our community. The lives, health and well-being of our loved ones matter most of all, and this vital investment and expansion will help ensure access to care and improved health outcomes that the people of Red Deer and central Alberta critically need,” she said.

The Red Deer Regional Hospital Centre currently provides a full spectrum of acute care, including advanced surgery, internal medicine and diagnostics, as well as obstetrics, pediatrics, oncology, critical care and emergency care for central Albertans. Approximately 50 per cent of patients seen at the hospital are referred from outside Red Deer.

The population of the Red Deer area is expected to increase by 24 per cent to 358,000 by 2035.

-With files from the Government of Alberta

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