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2014-05-30 at 13:46

Moving in soon

By Jodi Lundmark,
St. Joseph FoundationGrand A Day Draw tickets are now on sale. $1,000 daily draws in November. Grand Prize draw is for $10,000. License #M738339Click Here

THUNDER BAY - Patients waiting for long-term care will start moving into the transitional care unit at the Lakehead Psychiatric Hospital site Monday.

The 26 beds at the St. Joseph's Care Group site are part of a $14 million announcement made by Ontario's Minister of Health and Long-Term Care Deb Matthews in March to help address gridlock at the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre.

SJCG received $2.5 million to operate the transitional care unit for about two years. Once the Centre of Excellence for Integrated Seniors' Services, a 416 long-term care bed facility, is expected to be open.

Buckler said that project is on time and on budget and should be open by 2015.

"There's a long waiting list for people waiting to get into long-term care. We want to achieve some flow through the hospital bed system and so 26 people will be waiting here on a temporary basis," she said.

The transitional care unit at the LPH has undergone a facelift. Drywalling and fresh paint has gone up and the area has all new furnishings.

"There is a lot of space here and our clients should be quite comfortable while they are waiting for their choice of a long-term care bed," said Buckler.

The unit will also include a full health-care team of doctors, nurses, personal support workers, occupational and physical therapists as well as therapeutic recreationists.

In addition to the 26 beds at the LPH, the minister's announcement included 17 spaces at the former McKellar Hospital for seniors and people in need of care.

SJCG is looking to eventually close the LPH site after the CEISS is open and the organization's new mental health wing is added to the St. Joseph's Hospital site.

Buckler said requests for prequalification from general contractors is closing this week for the mental health wing and they will be looking to get the next necessary approvals on the project within a couple of months.



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Watchful says:
That will never be enough, our population is aging far too quickly. Opening a new home and shutting down others still leaves us in a mess
5/30/2014 5:03:03 PM
cityisgreat says:
Finally someone is doing something for our seniors to create more beds. It's a start, but we need more permanent beds...let's go lins and ministry ...
5/30/2014 7:03:43 PM
Mazda323 says:
It's about time they used this facility. Instead of looking towards permanent closure, they should be looking to use more of it. It's no secret that there are a lot of people with mental health issues, why not use this facility for them and free up even more space at TBRHSC?
5/30/2014 9:33:24 PM
Curious says:
Well it's about time. This should have been done a long time ago. I just hope they do a better job of staffing compared to the nursing homes. The cutbacks are actually becoming dangerous for staff and residents. And St. Joseph's care group is also drastically cutting staff. The top dogs get the bucks and the residents pay over $2,000 a month and don't get much in the line of care.
5/30/2014 10:05:15 PM
user says:
Since there has been much negativity about this hospital's previous function, could you please refer to it as the " former Lakehead Psychiatric Hostpital"?

Thanks. It about time this place be used for something and this is a great start!
5/31/2014 7:04:53 AM
bluebear1985 says:
I applaud that something is finally being done to at least somewhat ease the gridlock at TBRHSC. However, this seems too much like an election tactic to me. Is this money actually coming, or is it just an effort to get re-elected? We'll have to wait and see.
5/31/2014 6:14:02 PM
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