An open letter to:
The Honourable Christy Clark,
Premier, Province of British Columbia
Dear Premier Clark:
Re: Replacement of Mills Memorial Hospital, Terrace, B.C.
I wish to express my concern over the state of our Terrace hospital, Mills Memorial Hospital, and also my concern upon hearing of the delay of the business plan for the replacement of our hospital.
Mills Memorial Hospital is no longer an adequate or a suitable environment for modern medical requirements.
Constructed in 1961, it was not built for the introduction of the new services that have been squeezed in over the years – such as the CT scanner, chemotherapy department, kidney dialysis, operating room for eye surgery, plus many other departments.
Patient rooms are undersized and outdated, especially the four-bed wards, and the bathrooms are small and inadequate for patients with walkers or wheelchairs.
Power connections and other building services are also outdated.
These are just some of the problems that show that Mills Memorial Hospital is not adequate for modern health care to continue in Terrace and in the northwest.
Terrace is a hub for the catchment area covering the area from Burns Lake to Haida Gwaii and from Kitimat to the Yukon border.
The northwest urgently needs health care that meets the demands of community and area. We need a suitable environment that ensures our medical profession can be retained to serve their patients and one where the patients can have a safe recovery.
Mills Memorial Hospital is documented as needing replacement. We understand that a new hospital for Terrace is a Number 1 priority for the North West Regional Hospital District and Northern Health Authority.
Now we need the province to show a priority on the replacement of our hospital. We need the province to show leadership, to recognize the urgent need for modern heath care in the northwest and to place a priority on the replacement of our hospital.
As life long residents of the area, my wife and I have been involved with the first construction and fund raising for Mills Memorial Hospital and then through the Dr. R.E.M. Lee Hospital Foundation for the funding of medical equipment since 1988.
The purchase of the first CT Scanner in 1991 was one of the significant invests our community took to ensure we had proper health care in the northwest.
I ask for your prompt attention and consideration to our need for a new hospital for Terrace.
(Bill McRae is a Freeman of the City of Terrace.)