Vancouver Coastal Health, a regional health authority in Canada, has announced the opening of a new High Acuity Unit (HAU) at Lions Gate Hospital (LGH).

The new facility, situated next to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU), includes 12 individual patient rooms. It was built using donations made towards the Lions Gate Hospital Foundation (LGHF).

The HAU is equipped with vital-signs monitoring devices and other technology to offer high acuity care to the patients. The facility also has built-in patient lifts and spaces to accommodate mobile workstations.

Particularly, the new unit will serve patients who need additional care than what is provided at medical and surgical units, but does not require life support care offered in the ICU.

Additionally, the HAU will also support additional training of the staff at LGH.

Lions Gate Hospital ICU and Emergency Department director Corrie Irwin said: “What we are doing is following the principle of patient-centred care – we are putting the patients in the High Acuity Unit and wrapping the care they need around them.

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“We are going to be seeing increasingly complex patients – they may not require the high level of care provided in the Intensive Care Unit, but they need supports beyond what’s available through inpatient programs. The High Acuity Unit fills that gap. It completes the continuum of care.”

British Columbia Minister of Health Adrian Dix said: “The new high acuity unit at Lions Gate Hospital will help critically ill patients get improved access to the care they need.

“I thank the Lions Gate Hospital Foundation and all those who donated to this project to make it happen.”