(L-R) Dick Vollet and John Montalbano

Building for tomorrow’s emergencies

Promise Magazine: Promise 2020

This year, COVID-19 confronted us with a harsh new health care reality. However, it has also helped confirm our action plan: informing the design of the new St. Paul’s with future outbreaks in mind.

We’re building an integrated health care campus on the False Creek Flats – not for the next year but for the next 100 – and who knows what public health crises the dedicated staff of Providence Health Care (PHC) will have to face? Like the Sisters of Providence who, 126 years ago, built St. Paul’s on a plot that was charred by fire and only partially cleared, we are undertaking the building of the new St. Paul’s at the Jim Pattison Medical Centre with the same determined spirit.

Our cover story this issue (“The future of health care starts here, now”) offers an update on how the new hospital campus will become a nexus for health care and research that is centred around patients. In “Tomorrow’s health care, today”, we look at PHC’s incredible contributions as a founding member of Canada’s Digital Technology Supercluster, using artificial intelligence to improve skin cancer detection, and portable ultrasound technology which, among other uses, can help speed up COVID-19 diagnoses in rural communities.

Other features detail how St. Paul’s – now and in the future – strives to improve access and care for patients who may have historically been marginalized in the health care system. For example, in “A journey toward health and hope,” we meet the Indigenous health leaders who are working to lessen the impact of the still-raging opioid crisis on BC’s Indigenous communities, and, in “Advancing diversity in cancer care,” we explore how researchers are pioneering ways to save the lives of patients suffering from cancers especially common in the Asian population. Finally in “The science of women’s health,” meet the female physicians improving outcomes in women’s cardiovascular, maternal, and sexual health.

In the hallways of our current hospital we are continuing to lay the groundwork for the kind of advanced health care campus never before seen in BC, and are excited to share that shovels will be in the ground by yearend for the new St. Paul’s. We invite you to be a part of this momentous project. And to those who have already joined us, we thank you.

Dick Vollet, President & CEO, St. Paul’s Foundation & John Montalbano, Chair, St. Paul’s Foundation Board of Directors