The Northern Health Authority has quietly opened a new mental health residential facility that is larger and has more to offer than the one it is replacing.
At 25 beds instead of 20, the new Seven Sisters has a footprint nearly double the one it is replacing and offers more amenities.
Both are located on the grounds of the Mills Memorial Hospital property.
Five of the rooms are described as apartment-style so that residents can better adapt to independent living upon departure.
“We will continue to cultivate spaces of compassion, resilience and transformation, where every individual’s journey towards wellness is honored and supported,”said Clare Hart in charge of specialized services for Northern Health in the area.
Northern Health chair Colleen Nyce said she was thrilled with the new facility, saying the health authority’s goal is to continue to improve services.
Seven Sisters is described as a regional service providing long-term rehabilitation and recovery programs for adults living with serious and persistent mental illness.
PCL Constructors Westcoast Inc., which is building the new Mills, designed and built the new Seven Sisters.
The now former Seven Sisters building was demolished, a task that began yesterday and continued today.
Built in 2004, health officials said the building had to be demolished to make way for the new Mills.
But the decision was not without controversy when the Skeena Seniors Society mounted a concerted effort last year to have it converted into either seniors housing or used as a daycare centre for Mills employees.
Both suggestions were rebuffed by the provincial government which said the building was not suitable for either use.