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Ground was broken on a new expansion to the Russell Health Centre(RHC) yesterday afternoon.

The $2.5 million project will see an expanded CancerCare Manitoba program space at the RHC, that will allow people in the surrounding communities better access to care, close to home.

Prairie Mountain Health CEO Brian Schoonbaert says the RHC serves a large area, and this will make treatment more comfortable for those who need it.

"The new space will mean four times the amount of space that they currently have. So it'll be much better for the patients, more privacy, there'll be rooms for families."

Once complete, the project will add another 2,300 sq. ft. to the RHC's existing CancerCare Manitoba chemotherapy treatment space and will include:

  • Replacement of the existing nursing station and medication storage area
  • Creation of a dedicated patient washroom, nourishment area, and a small waiting area
  • Improved patient privacy
  • Space for future expansion of treatment areas, if needed

Construction on the project is expected to start within a week, and Schoonbaert says they're hoping to have the work done by the end of the year.

"They're hoping they might be in by the end of the calendar year but we'll see. It's a fairly substantial addition. It'll be on the southwest corner of the hospital, and eventually, they hope to even have their own parking lot, that might be coming later."

The project was mostly funded by the Expanding Community Cancer Care committee, which includes membership from Angusville, Beulah, Binscarth, Birtle, Foxwarren, Inglis, Langenburg, Sask., Roblin, Rossburn, Russell, St. Lazare, Shellmouth, Silverton, Solsgirth, and Waywayseecappo.

That committee raised $1.8 million in construction and equipment costs related to the expansion.  Last spring, the Manitoba government confirmed its commitment of $700,000 to support the remaining costs of this project.

ECCC Members at the groundbreaking in RussellECCC Members at the groundbreaking ceremony at the Russell Health Centre