IHA reviews new hospital items at West Kootenay/Boundary board meeting

The West Kootenay-Boundary Regional Hospital District (WKBRHD) held their January board meeting on Wednesday

Delegates from Interior Health (left to right): Todd Mastel

The West Kootenay-Boundary Regional Hospital District (WKBRHD) held their January board meeting on Wednesday (Jan. 23) at the Castlegar Complex.

Representatives from Interior Health were on hand to present the board, which consists of members from both the RDCK and the RDKB, with a detailed list of items for the next budget, which was approved in principle.

“This is our major meeting for the year in terms of the Interior Health Authority presenting its funding request to the regional hospital district for the 2013-14 fiscal year,” said Todd Mastel, director of business support for Interior Health. “Basically for items we would like to start purchasing, or projects we would like to start in April.”

In total, IHA is asking the WKBRHD board for $2.4 million, which is 40 percent of the value of those items, which is $6.4 million. The remainder of the cost is picked up by the Ministry of Health.

“There are many items on the list,” said Mastel. “It’s definitely an increase from our request from the prior year.”

The items are determined largely through a needs assessment throughout all IHA.

“Every year the health authority does a balancing act based on all our needs throughout IH looking at what opportunities we can in terms of group buying, so that results in some fluctuation among the hospital districts as to how much we may ask for subject to their approval on any individual year.”

The biggest item set for purchase for Trail’s Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital (KBRH) is a multi-purpose radiology system.

“It’s the new technology that replaces what we used to call radio-graphic fluoroscopy,” said Mastel. “The specifics are – we use it for doing studies and taking images of basically the moving parts and organs within the body. Things like your gastrointestinal system; your liver; gall bladder; looking for blockages and so forth. This is a major piece of equipment that we use to do that type of diagnostic work. It’s a big improvement. Much crisper and cleaner image for the physicians and staff.”

The total cost for the new radiology system is just over $1 million. The amount the WKBRHD would have to chip in is $420,000 (40 per cent).

Major items for the Castlegar Health Centre on the budget include a new telephone system and a new chiller unit.

“It’s an HVAC piece of equipment,” said Mastel. “The current one we have is basically prone to break down and we’re having trouble getting parts for it.  It’s a replacement item which will allow us to integrate (the new unit) with the other chiller units at the health centre. We’ll have better redundant capacity if one were to go down it’ll keep the building cool in the summer.”

The cost for the chiller unit is $200,000 which WKBRHD is expected to kick in $80,000.



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