Tbnewswatch Local News
Friday July 3 2015
9:39 PM EDT
2014-03-27 at 11:20

New beds by June

St. Joseph
Jodi Lundmark, tbnewswatch.com
St. Joseph's Care Group president and CEO Tracy Buckler said work is underway in the Lakehead Psychiatric Hopsital for 26 transitional care beds that will help with the city's gridlock issue.
By Jodi Lundmark, tbnewswatch.com

The Lakehead Psychiatric Hospital should have its 26 transitional care beds ready for patients by the first week of June.

Work is underway at the LPH to make way for the beds that were part of a $14 million announcement made by Ontario's Minister of Health and Long-Term Care Deb Matthews earlier this month to help address the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre's gridlock issue.

The funding will provide the 26 beds at the LPH to treat people with long-term illnesses and disabilities as well as 17 more spaces at the former McKellar Hospital for seniors and people in need of care.

St. Joseph's Care Group president and CEO Tracy Buckler said they are reopening a unit of the Algoma Street site and painting and drywalling has begun.

But the biggest task to get the site ready to take patients is staffing.

"We're going to operate this unit as an extension of our transitional care program," she said, noting the beds at the LPH site will be used for people waiting for long-term care.

Through the minister's announcement, St. Joe's received about $2.5 million to operate the unit for about two years.

Buckler said they'll be hiring about 22 full-time equivalent positions, so more than 22 people will be hired as some positions will be part time and casual.

Those positions include registered nurses, registered nurse practitioners, personal support workers, recreationists and rehabilitation assistants.

The hiring process will take time, but Buckler said that gives them time to get the unit ready for patients.

"It's a nice, bright area. It's a large space for sure," said Buckler.

"It's great for temporary occupancy."

Buckler said the beds at the LPH will help increase flow throughout the entire health care system in Thunder Bay and the city's overcapacity issue is with long-term care.

"We're trying to help the gridlock situation. We're trying to help with the alternative level of care challenge across the system right now. I think this will be a good option for a temporary basis."

St. Joseph's Care Group is looking to eventually close the LPH site. That will happen after the Centre of Excellence for Integrated Seniors' Services, a 416 long-term care bed facility, is open and the organization's new mental health wing is added to the St. Joseph's Hospital site.

Construction of CEISS is expected to be complete in 2015 and Buckler said the mental health wing will go out for tender soon.



Click here to submit a letter to the editor.

Click here to report a typo or error



We've improved our comment system.
hotchoc says:
I find remarks on this site troubling because it seems people obtain their opinions from coffee shops and know little if nothing about an issue.
People from this city are complaining about the long term care situation. This is a Canada problem with an aging population but the thing I do not understand is how the province is the one whose fault everything always is.

The province has already built 110 new beds for Seniors and are in the process of building 300 or so more plus the new ones they just announced.

The City of Thunder Bay on the other hand is in the process of closing 300 beds in our city yet there is never a negative comment about them. How exactly is our city treating Seniors.

I find myself defending a government when I simply try to discuss the issue regardless of which party is in charge. I believe my portrayal of the issue is accurate. So the obvious question to me is why the City always escapes criticism on this issue while the province attempts to fix the City's mess
3/28/2014 6:59:36 AM
Mastermind says:
The building is big but isn't designed for modern patient care. No bathrooms in the rooms (shared in hall), no sinks for nurses to wash hands and water has to be brought in because of lead contamination. Also, St. Joes does not own the building.
3/27/2014 7:35:18 PM
Waldo Lydecker says:
More rushing just to buy the liberals return trip to the party.

With more gas plant news today, I don't know why Wynne just doesn't step down.
3/27/2014 5:07:31 PM
yqtyqt says:
Yep the Liberal DNA.

Lie, cheat, deny, buy, and then fly. Repeat over and over again until you get re-elected. The gas plant fiasco just gets worse and worse as the days go by. Unfortunately, we won't know the who truth until the Libs are out of Queens Park. I don't know how McGuinty and his cabinet of the day, including Wynne and Mikie aren`t in jail.

But I like the posting below, lets throw Pop in the old nuthouse.
3/28/2014 9:28:20 AM
Tbaylifer 1 says:
Unfortunatly, the Liberal government has made a mess of healthcare in Ontario. Privitization has been their top priority. Oh, yes they put money in the system and to the lay person it would appear this is good news however when the money is followed less is spent at the bedside and more the further you get from the bed. Some seniors, living in the private seniors assisted living apartments are paying as much as 4 or 5 thousand dollars per month for the added care they require. From laundry to walking to the dining room. They paid taxes when they were young for a system that has abandoned them. Sad
3/27/2014 4:50:21 PM
trevor99 says:
Is it your position that everyone in a private care facility is there because the gov't screwed up. That is whacked even for this site. The Liberals have have done more for the hospital than I can ever remember. Are things perfect, nope. Could they do more, sure with more money. Some things maybe even could be better without more money, but they have done many things here. Way more nurses and doc's. Some great equipment and services. And since when has privatization been a priority. There must be a potential for an election soon. You can tell because the misinformation is flying high and wide.
3/27/2014 10:50:20 PM
yqtyqt says:
Well trevor this is 100% election motivated.

If they wouldn't have doled out the cash for the gas plant re-election scheme, if they wouldn't have screwed up the ornge mess, if they wouldn't have given the Working Families Coalition unnecessary wage increases, if, if, if. This government has squandered more money and dug a deeper hole for future taxpayers than any other in Ontario history.

Interest on debt is the third most expensive item in the provincial budget. Every Ontario citizen pays $1000 dollars each year to service the interest. $4000 dollars a year per household of 4. Where did that money go? Teachers, cops, firefighters, hydro workers, hospital CAOs, University profs, other civilservants. Mcguinty/Wynne could have called a wage freeze or rollback. But they needed the working families collation votes too badly.

We need a new mindset in Ontario. New and fresh thinking. Not the some old lying, buying, denying and cheating that's been the cornerstone of the Liberal party.
3/28/2014 10:01:07 AM
ring of fire dude says:
I'm afraid to get old .
3/27/2014 11:36:54 PM
yqtyqt says:
I don't blame you. With the government of the day, you're on your own. And with the pro-event center, you'll be labelled a cane shaker and forced into a your remaining lifetime of paying operating deficits and losing your home due to taxation.

Apparently according to a few stooges on this site, you will be stripped of your opinion and told to fall in line or get lost (or die). But leave your bequest your money to the future event center deficit fund.
3/28/2014 9:47:19 AM
theangryone says:
Hopefully my father can now get bumped up the LONG waiting list or even get into one of these "homes." About freaking time ONTARIO. The way seniors are treated is DESPICABLE.
3/27/2014 4:24:41 PM
rob20 says:
Ok... and the out-of-date LPH will now be closed by... 2040 maybe?

While I applaud the quick action in creating bed space for those who need it can we please get on one side of the fence or the other? LPH, old antiquated, unsuitable for use & its getting wrecking balled or it's still usable/renovate-able? Because this closing has been on-going for like 20+ years now yet we keep putting cash, time & people into that complex.
3/27/2014 1:12:58 PM
Lpitura says:
The building is in fantastic shape and has been continually updated despite being underused. Doesn't seem like you have been inside.

3/27/2014 1:43:11 PM
Eastender says:
I hope not.
3/27/2014 8:49:31 PM
rob20 says:
Why would anyone not a patient or patients family or staff have been in the LPH? The public can only go by what we're told... which 99% of the time is it needs to be leveled because its too out of date.
3/28/2014 8:44:35 AM
whatelseisnew says:
The LPH is HUGE! Why not upgrade it instead of closing it? A building such as that facility is built better then anything that has been built in the last 20-30 years and has TONS of parking and a huge beautiful yard. Why does Thunder Bay have to continually knock down quality built building to replace them with pre-fab junk that's half the size?

Stop with the wasting already and let's work with whats already standing!
3/27/2014 12:36:12 PM
TBDR says:
Great news... it's hard to fathom why that building isn't getting more attention considering it's in great shape and is sitting half empty. I hope more spaces get added to it moving forward!
3/27/2014 11:58:26 AM
Comments for this story are semi-moderated. Read our comment guideline.

Add a new comment.
You must log in to add comments.
Create a new account
Log In