and finally, here are the minutes from our meeting in May with guests from St. Paul’s Hospital:
SRA May 6, 2015 at the Strathcona Community Centre
Special Meeting on the New St.Paul's Hospital announced for the Flats
Intro by Elana Zysblat
- CBC asked to record the meeting and the membership was polled for their preferences. CBC was asked to not film people’s faces as they asked questions, to keep their cameras at the rear of the room, and to ask their follow-up questions of presenters and participants after it was over.
NEWS in the neighborhood
- There have been a number of distressing events in the neighborhood, but also good news. We have tried to pass on this good news through the newsletter and encourage people to let us know so we can.
- Guy Wakeman, head of the tenants council from Stamps on Raymur, announced a neighborhood meeting on the 7th and invited anyone who is interested in what’s happening to come join the residents.
- Tomorrow night, May 7th is also the 3rd self-defense workshop on Hastings at Raymur Community Centre. It was unfortunately sold out/registered very quickly after posting. People should remain in touch because of cancellations. We are also requesting a new one.
- The follow-up on E-Comm is continuing and 2 staff members of E-Comm as well as Car 87 will be speakers at next meeting
- 14th will be the yard sale/junk shop on Hawks
- Prior St road safety audit by Urban Systems is proceeding but the Livability Assessment will be proceeding later this month at the linear park at Hawkes and Union. Details on our website and Cantonese translation will be available, as well as an online survey.
ANNOUNCEMENTS from floor
- Bail hearing for Caleb Heaton had his bail hearing this morning. He had an outburst and the hearing was postponed until Friday.
ST. PAUL’S Presentation
- Primary speakers were Neil MacConnell, Cheif Project Officer;Darlene MacKinnon, Cheif Clinical Planner. Three other staff were also in attendance.
- Mr. MacConnell introduced other members of the team, and said this was their first public meeting but there would be many more.
- St. Paul's is one aspect of the complex, but they operate many other clinics and programs (89 ambulatory and outpatient).
- Concentrate on vulnerable populations.
- First attempted to move into the space years ago, but only now are they able to get gov't support through a new emphasis on population health.
- At the same time, their existing and new programs have overwhelmed the old site.
- The majority of patients (60%) are admitted through emergency, over 50% of ambulance admissions.
- 22% are from the DTES Local Health Area.
- The buildings and configuration of the New St Paul’s is not yet established, but there will be a core hospital, ambulatory care/day surgery building, research building, support/primary care building, non-acute care building, and space for expansion later.
- This may involve moving some parts of Mt. St. Joseph’s to the new site.
- Funding will require 1.2 billion. Gov't will provide 500 million, rest will come from fundraising, and “leveraging present real estate holdings”.
- He stated that there would be a constant emphasis on consultations and considerations as the project continues
- Hoping to complete their business plan within 12-18 months but who knows.
- After that, major consultations begin.
- It will have to satisfy the medical needs and community concerns of the West End, City Center and DTES.
QUESTIONS from the floor
Q; The University of McGill has done a similar expansion and move. Have you talked to them about their development?
A Not yet but we will consult with them as well as others.
Q How familiar are you with the Prior St. concerns?
A Not in detail but we were discussing this years ago when we first broached the idea.
Q Two part question. The 1st, traffic management with loss of viaducts are already a concern, and this development would result in more traffic from the NE. Will Providence work with the community to help keep this and other traffic increases from using Prior? The 2nd part is the pressure on housing and affordable housing on this neighborhood. Could this development include some means of supporting affordable housing?
A The traffic patterns will be part of the studies that go into developing this plan, and we will be taking community housing needs and desires into account. But there are currently no plans to do housing, because the area is not currently zoned for housing and that's unlikely to change. Our projected expansion would need 1-1.25 million sq. ft., which is a third of the site.
Q What plans for the other 2/3 of the land?
A Some is for future expansion, the rest for industrial or other non-housing development to raise money.
Q What happens to the old St Paul’s?
A That is being discussed with the West End and other stakeholders
Q Is this a done deal?
A If the business plan isn't good, that may cause some changes. But the deal is very much going ahead and wanted by all parties.
Q Do Providence/St Paul’s in particular want this to happen now, here?
A Yes definitely
Q This location seems to be in a traffic bottleneck. The land is in-fill on tidal flats which is not a good location in the event of a major earthquake, and is low enough to be threatened by water levels if they rise. Has this been considered? Is this the best location, or just the most convenient and available location?
A Previous studies said the land is stable enough, and the engineering to withstand earthquakes has improved immeasurably. The location is a good one on its own merits but it being large and available have been significant considerations.
Q Could the non-acute care (dementia, end of life) programs and resources be here?
A These programs are going ahead but will likely be elsewhere, on Heather St. Much of this depends on the gov't putting their money into the programs they have called for.
Q Will a change of gov't also change these plans?
A Unlikely, these are long term budgetary commitments by government and not just the party in power.
Q Will Burrad/St Paul’s be sold?
A Not sure but likely, since we aren't going to get 700 million dollars through fundraising
Q Will Main and the surrounding areas will be the route for hundreds of ambulances a day?
A Currently 12% of patients come to St. Paul’s by ambulance, the remainder come in by other means, and the ambulance may be coming in without sirens, i.e. non-urgent. The plan will also examine how clinics, homecare etc. will be integrated into the health plan which will be elsewhere, not in this new hospital. But all the infrastructure in the older hospitals this would replace needs repair- Mt St Josephs will need 125milion just to address its current repair problems
Q Could we see an increase in clinics which could help with non-acute care in the DTES.
A Our consultations on community needs will be looking at exactly these suggestions.
Q Can you anticipate the population of the new hospital?
A No, current in old St. Paul’s is 4000, the new would be more.
Q Was it your choice to move to station site?
A Yes, all of the planning and all of the studies showed that there was no way the old site could possibly meet the anticipated needs for only another decade or so.
Q What costs are involved in keeping the old site going until the new site is ready?
A Unknown but we will have to do so and pay for it.
Q Is this the best site or the only site available?
A Essentially it’s because its empty and available.
Q (Comment)The development and livability implications of its location here are not confined to just building that complex, but also all of the ancillary services that will grow around it.
Q Will the mental health programs and support go into the new site?
A Yes, but the programs are shifting towards more integrated rather separated community and acute care. St Paul’s and Providence/Coastal second generation plans are working hard to make sure there is 24/7 support available.
Q The problem is that this second generation plan happened in isolation from community consultations. Will Providence take a leading role in involving the community?
A Yes, not only will we but our direction from the province requires us to.
Q Will you be working with VGH and other hospitals to make sure appropriate care is available?
A Yes, again, this is both our hope and our mandated requirement.
Q Providence went ahead with a separate health plan for the DTES when the DTES LAPP was in progress but essentially ignored that process. How are you taking into account the big picture, all the separate planning processes, which need to be woven into your plan?
A We hope to and perhaps this project can be a catalyst for bringing these together
Meeting adjourned at 8:25PM and the representatives from St. Paul’s stayed to answer individual questions