Island Health acquires private surgical centers in View Royal, Nanaimo – Campbell River Mirror
The province took over two private surgical centers on Vancouver Island and brought them into the public portfolio.
The View Royal Surgical Center (VRSC) in Greater Victoria and the Seafield Surgical Center (SSC) in Nanaimo have had their leases taken over and their equipment purchased by Island Health.
The move will allow residents access to an additional 4,600 surgeries and endoscopies (2,300 each) per year. Health Minister Adrian Dix said it would increase capacity and reduce waiting times for people who need surgery.
“Our government is committed to providing surgical care to British Columbians when they need it, including recovering from the surgical effects of the pandemic, and setting up these centers as Island Health facilities. will help us all achieve this goal,” he said in a Thursday statement.
Facilities currently perform certain low complexity procedures such as plastic, general, orthopedic, urological, vascular, pediatric dental, endoscopy and cataract surgeries requiring hospitalization for less than 24 hours.
“A broader range of surgical services will be provided through greater utilization of unused and underutilized capacity at these sites,” the statement said.
The province is investing $11.5 million in the acquisition of the two centers, which it says will allow facilities to tailor surgical services to local needs. It is seen as a way to expand access without investing in capital resources for surgical services at hospitals in Victoria and Nanaimo.
The two facilities already serve as extensions to Island Health hospitals, with Seafield providing some public procedures since 2004 and View Royal doing the same since 2017. The partnership has seen 40,000 patients served over the past five years.
The health authority continues to finalize the agreement with Surgical Centers Inc., owner of the two facilities. Its CEO has said its mission is to increase surgical access and reduce wait times.
“VRSC is recognized as one of the best non-hospital surgical centers in Canada,” said Dr. Mohamed Nanji of Surgical Centers Inc.. “The healthcare teams and legacies we have created at our facilities in Victoria and of Nanaimo will serve Island Health for years to come.
The Ministry of Health has pledged to catch up on surgeries delayed by the pandemic, while increasing the number of procedures above pre-pandemic levels.
“Through this plan, children and families will receive the care they depend on when they need it,” said Mitzi Dean, MPP for Esquimalt-Metchosin.
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Island Health Nanaimo West Shore