The next step in advanced healthcare will be making it's way to the Energy City within the month. Representatives of the St. Joseph's Hospital Foundation and Hospital staff were on hand Wednesday morning to announce that they will be upgrading the chemotherapy department, and have also opened up naming rights.

The unit sees 450 different patients in a year, with approximately 640 treatments in that time. However, the area itself can only accommodate 3 patients at a time, thus a desperate need for improvement.

"The patients here get exceptional care, and they're happy to talk about that repeatedly, but the space was just a little less than desirable. At a strategic planning meeting of our management team in the past few weeks, we came up with a way to reorganize our emergency department, where chemotherapy has been previously located, and to reallocate some space to the point where we're able to expand our chemotherapy, relocate it to a more convenient location and make these improvements," explained Hospital Executive Director Greg Hoffart.

Currently the chemo unit consists of one room, less than 100 square feet, with three treatment chairs. The changes will include moving the unit down the hall, though still adjacent to registration.

"What we're thrilled with is going to be a nice, inviting, comfortable environment for them (the patients) and their caregivers, and their family," Hoffart said.

"The new unit is going to afford us the ability for the patients to have a little more room, room for their family. Chairs for their family, which they currently don't have, private televisions, blanket warmers, water machines, and a washroom right in the unit. Previously they had to go down the hall, and it's just not something you want. These folks are going through some really challenging times, they're some of the vulnerable people in our community, and our mission is to serve all of our patients so you want to do it in a way that is conducive to making their challenging time as comfortable as possible."

"We're thrilled that, because of the generosity of the St. Joseph's Hospital Foundation and southeast Saskatchewan, we're able to do that right now," he expressed."

Renovations and purchase of equipment is expected to be completed within a month, and they expect to be able to keep the expenses within $50,000.


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