Pharmacy Upgrades at Squamish General Next year


By Gagandeep Ghuman
Published: Aug. 25, 2012

Upgrades to the Squamish General Hospital Pharmacy are  underway, VCH has confirmed.

The design portion of the contract was awarded to Kasian architecture, and the goal is to start construction by the November of 2013, said Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) media relations Trudi Beutel.

“The pharmacy steering committee is well into that phase now,” she said.

The steering committee is a group of stakeholders that works with the architect. The committee includes facilities, pharmacy reps, operations and architects.

The Squamish Rotary Club was also heavily invested in the project, donating $197,000 to the pharmacy expansion.

The project is estimated to be complete by July 2013. The new pharmacy will be built onto the back of the hospital building.

The Squamish pharmacy project will improve the quality of sterile medication preparation as well as patient and staff safety.

The new space will meet national accreditation standards as well as WorkSafeBC workplace standards. 

The new pharmacy will accommodate additional demand for service as beds are opened in Hilltop House seniors’ residence, and will be fully equipped to accommodate chemotherapy preparation for patients undergoing out-patient treatment for cancer at Squamish General Hospital.

The hospital has had to move its fume hood, a place where chemicals are mixed, to Hilltop House for lack of a proper facility.

But Hilltop was a temporary solution.

The new pharmacy at SGH will be equipped with the proper fume hood, Beutel said.

She added that Chemotherapy treatment is provided at SGH.

Capital upgrades worth $1.8 million are slated for the pharmacy at Squamish General Hospital and the lab at the Pemberton Health Centre.

The projects are both high priority items that will improve the functionality of the respective health care facilities they serve.

Total costs for the two projects are estimated at $1.2 million for the Squamish pharmacy expansion and $600,000 for the Pemberton lab. 

The Sea to Sky Regional Hospital District will contribute a 40 per cent share toward the total cost of the projects the local communities identified as key.