After years of negotiations, Powell River Regional Hospital District (RHD) and Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) have reached an agreement on replacing Olive Devaud Residence. The new residential care facility is expected to be opened by mid-2013.
Under the agreement, the $24 million Olive Devaud Replacement Project will be cost shared between VCH and the RHD. The new residential care facility will be built on land owned by the RHD and located adjacent to Powell River General Hospital. Once complete, the RHD will own the new building and land and VCH will operate the residential care home under a lease agreement with the RHD.
“This is an exciting development for the community and especially for the Olive Devaud residents and their families,” said Colin Palmer, RHD board chair. “On behalf of all the RHD directors and staff, I wish to thank Vancouver Coastal Health for being prepared to operate and maintain the new facility for many years to come. This announcement is the culmination of a long process of planning and re-planning that involved many people, including local physicians and community leaders. It has truly been a team effort.”
The existing residence is an 81-bed facility constructed in 1966. It was never designed to meet the complex needs of today’s residential care clients. The replacement facility will be able to accommodate 102 beds, an increase of 21 beds over existing capacity. The new beds will be phased in over time in accordance with available operating budgets and community need.
VCH has explored numerous options for funding the Olive Devaud rebuild in recent years. The proposed agreement with RHD not only preserves its land assets, but also addresses the healthcare needs of Powell River’s aging population. Additionally, since the debt for Powell River’s acute care hospital is almost at an end, taxpayers throughout the region could see a 40 per cent reduction in their RHD taxes once the facility is built.
“The agreement with the Powell River Regional Hospital District speaks to the strength of innovation and collaborative partnerships in order to get the job done,” said Wendy Hansson, chief operating officer, VCH-Coastal. “VCH would like to thank the RHD for its generous support of the Olive Devaud redevelopment project. Without assistance from the regional hospital district, this much-needed community project would not be possible at this time.”