Left to Right: Chief Rhonda Phillips, Xatśūll First Nation; Lori Sellars, Executive Director Three Corners Health Service Society; Chief Willie Sellars, Williams Lake First Nation; Phyllis Rosette, Health Manager Stswecem'c Xgat'tem (Canoe & Dog Creek) First Nations; Adrian Dix, Health Minister; David Archie, Cultural Coordinator, Williams Lake First Nation; Danica, Cultural Support Guest, Williams Lake First Nations.
Construction has begun on the Cariboo Memorial Hospital project in Williams Lake with the official groundbreaking event on July 4. The project will improve health care access for the Secwépemc, Tŝilhqot'in and Dãkelh Dené First Nations and people living in the Cariboo-Chilcotin area.
After opening remarks from Health Minister Adrian Dix and other officials, Williams Lake First Nation Chief Willie Sellars and David Archie, Cultural Coordinator with the Williams Lake First Nation led a blessing ceremony that included traditional Secwépemc songs, drumming and a water offering.
The project will see the construction of a three-storey addition and will include renovations to the existing facilities. Some of those renovations include adding new beds, a new medical/surgical inpatient unit, a substance-use inpatient unit, a patient-seclusion room and an expanded ambulatory-care and oncology unit with renovated treatment spaces. The maternity and women's health unit will also see significant expansion and renovation, as will the pharmacy.
The hospital will remain open during construction, which is scheduled for two phases.
Phase one of the project will include construction of the new addition and is expected to be completed in 2026. Phase two completion scheduled for 2029 and will include the renovations and expansion of the various departments.
Health Minister Adrian Dix, Mayor Surinderpal Rathor, and Chief Willie Sellars completing the blessing ceremony