ACT NOW Campaign Update – Issue 9

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The VCH-Richmond ACT NOW project team.


The B.C. government has announced approval of the $860 million business plan for the Richmond Hospital Redevelopment Project. We’d now like to introduce you to two important ‘behind-the-scenes’ individuals whose teams were responsible for drafting and submitting the business plan and whose significant efforts will oversee the project over the coming years. We look forward to an exciting journey ahead!

Sharon Petty, Chief Project Officer, Richmond Hospital Redevelopment Project

Helen Tam, Director, Clinical Planning & Capital Projects, Richmond Hospital Redevelopment Project

Sharon Petty, Chief Project Officer and Helen Tam, Director, Clinical Planning & Capital Projects for the Richmond Hospital Redevelopment Project sat down with us recently to give us an overview of what to expect next. Both women have extensive backgrounds in project management in the health care sector – primarily in Vancouver Coastal Health and the Provincial Health Services Authority and each brings a breadth of experience to this important project.

Between the two of them, Sharon and Helen lead a core team of 18 individuals whose facilities and health care operations expertise will drive the project. Sharon reports directly to the Project Board and senior leadership of Richmond Hospital and Vancouver Coastal Health. Additional stakeholders, including compliance experts, architects, design teams, quantity surveillance and subject matter specialists will be brought on board for defined periods of time as the various stages and phases of this important project unfold over the next several years.

We started by asking each of them to share their reaction to Premier John Horgan’s announcement on July 13, 2021. Sharon Petty expressed relief at the announcement and exclaimed that she “was really happy for both the Richmond community and for her team, who were stretched to fulfill the expanded business plan scope and new requirements in a record amount of time.” Helen Tam said she immediately “felt the weight of responsibility to deliver a much-needed acute care facility for Richmond residents and Richmond Hospital staff.” Helen further added that “many in the community including hospital staff had lost hope that this project would ever be started” and is excited to be able to rebuild that trust by “showing evidence of completion and ultimate success.”

Q. Construction of the new facility begins in 2024. That’s more than two years from now. What happens between now and 2024 when construction is due to begin?

A: Sharon: “The first phase of the project will involve moving the Cancer Care Clinic, the Psychiatric Emergency Unit (PEU) and other programs from the Park Centre and the Rotunda so that demolition of those buildings can happen before preparing the site for construction of the new Yurkovich Family Pavilion.”
“The Cancer Care Clinic needs to be purpose-built on the ground floor of the Milan Ilich Pavilion. And the PEU will be temporarily housed in a modular building in front of the existing Emergency Department until work can begin on creating its permanent home in Richmond Hospital’s South Tower. Academic programs will move to the 5th floor of the North Tower. We anticipate that these moves will be completed and fully operational by the end of 2023.”

A: Helen: “We’re very excited about the new permanent space for the Cancer Care Clinic. The existing cancer care space is about 15 years old and hidden at the back of Richmond Hospital. The new space will be close to the main hospital entrance in the Milan Ilich Pavilion ensuring a more welcoming impression for patients and their families. The care bays will be right-sized and will be created to allow more natural light to be part of the patient experience.”

Q: When do you expect the new Yurkovich Family Pavilion to open for patients?

A: Sharon: “We’re planning a phased occupancy of the new facility. Phase One, which includes the Emergency Department, the Medical Imaging Centre, Satellite Loading Docks and the Medical Device Reprocessing Department will be ready in late 2027. The second phase which includes the Critical Care Unit, the Pharmacy, four inpatient floors and the Surgical Centre is scheduled to open the following year in October of 2028.”

Q: Is there anything else you’d like to share with our readers?

A: Helen: “Yes, I’d like to say a huge thank you to all the donors who have been and continue to be our partners in this endeavour. These partnerships are invaluable because they add validity to the project – evident to everyone including the government. Donor support is special – not simply for the funding – but for the spirit from which it comes.”

A: Sharon: “Yes, I’d like to add my heartfelt thanks to donors who have given this project a ‘head-nod’ by understanding the value and importance of making public health available to all. This project wouldn’t have been possible without the support of the Richmond community and donors to Richmond Hospital Foundation.”

Our special thanks to both Sharon Petty and Helen Tam for providing us with some early insight into this significant project. We’ll continue to keep you updated on what’s happening ‘behind-the-scenes’ at the Richmond Hospital Redevelopment Project site.

Richmond Hospital Foundation

At Richmond Hospital Foundation, joy is at the very heart of the work we do with you. We inspire joyful giving, because to give joyfully is to know that you are part of the solution. You are part of something bigger than yourself. You are helping your loved ones, your friends, your neighbours and your colleagues. You are a driver of health and prosperity. There is a joyousness in coming together to create a life well-lived.

It is our sincere hope you are always inspired to help fund innovation for life. To build a better and healthier future for Richmond. Joyful giving means joyful living.

For more information about the new Yurkovich Family Pavilion of Richmond Hospital, please contact:

Natalie D. Meixner, ICD.D.
President & CEO
[email protected] (604) 244 5205

Spencer Gall
Senior Manager, Philanthropy
[email protected] (604) 244 5496

Gloria Wong
Senior Manager, Philanthropy
[email protected] (604) 244 5376

Endora Fan
Senior Manager, Legacy Giving
[email protected] (604) 244 5473