Health Minister Pauline Frost at a press conference in Whitehorse on May. 9, 2018. Frost announced Meditech upgrades and planning work for a new secure medical unit at the Whitehorse General Hospital this week. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)

Improvements planned for Whitehorse General Hospital

They include planning, design work for a new secure medical unit and Meditech upgrades

Planning work for a new secure medical unit and information system upgrades are in store at the Whitehorse General Hospital, said Pauline Frost, minister of health and social services.

“Our government is pleased to support the Yukon Hospital Corporation and the replacement of its current hospital information system, Meditech, through the allocation of $7.2 million from the territorial health investment fund,” she said on April 11 in a ministerial statement, noting that YHC has been using the system for almost 20 years.

“Most” departmental client records aren’t electronic, and, if they are, they aren’t “well integrated,” Frost said.

“An integrated electronic health record provides authorized clinicians with a complete and comprehensive near-real-time view of a client’s journey through the Yukon health system,” she said. “In addition to enhancements for clinicians, implementation of an enhanced medical system will include a patient portal that enables clients to easily and securely access their health records online.”

Asked by reporters whether there are any safeguards in place to ensure this type of information is protected, Frost said this model is being used across the country.

“We want to ensure protection of privacy of all clients that come into our care and whatever systems we have in place is state of the art, top of the line that protects individuals’ privacy rights. That’s, of course, one of the key priorities.”

Frost said during her statement that Meditech is used in seven provinces and two territories.

YHC has been given $1 million this year in order to plan and design a new secure medical unit, Frost said.

This is being done because the one used right now “does not meet current client and patient safety standards.”

“The improved space will also accommodate patient dining, a lounge, and a medication room. The hospital is considering the empty space above the emergency department for this new unit,” Frost said. “The creation of an improved secure medical unit at Whitehorse General Hospital will also enhance the hospital’s ability to provide quality health care to patients with mental health disorders.”

NDP House Leader Kate White had mostly positive things to say about both investments, but made note of too many people seeking mental health supports at the hospital.

“I think that it is a bit pre-emptive to pat ourselves on the back when we’re being told about a whole-of-government approach while the government is also overseeing a nearly 50-year-old mental health counselling and support services organization collapse in the Yukon,” she said.

Yukon Party MLA Patti McLeod’s questions included whether $7 million is the projected cost of the secure medical unit. She also asked for operations and maintenance estimates of the medical bay in the future.

Frost didn’t answer McLeod’s questions.

These issues were brought up last month in the legislative assembly, but Frost told reporters the point was to make it clear to Yukoners that her department is working with the YHC to make these improvements happen.

Contact Julien Gignac at julien.gignac@yukon-news.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Yukonomist Keith Halliday
Yukonomist: The aesthetics and economics of highway strips

One of the many cultural experiences you enjoy while driving from Whitehorse… Continue reading

Submitted
Artwork by Grade 2 student Faith showing her thanks for everyone.
Artwork by Grade 2 student Faith showing her thanks for everyone. (Submitted)
Yukon kids express gratitude for nature, pets and friends in art campaign

More than 50 children submitted artwork featuring things they are grateful for

Team Yukon skip Laura Eby, left, directs her team as Team Northern Ontario skip Krysta Burns looks on at the Scotties Tournament of Hearts in Calgary on Feb. 22. (Jeff McIntosh/CP)
Team Yukon reports positive experience at Scotties

Team Yukon played their final game at the national championship in Calgary on Thursday afternoon

A sign indicating a drop-off area behind Selkirk Elementary school in Whitehorse on Feb. 25. (Haley Ritchie/Yukon News)
Parking lot proposal for Selkirk Elementary criticized

Parents and school council are raising concerns about green space and traffic woes

adsf
WYATT’S WORLD

Wyatt’s World for Feb. 26, 2021

Tom Ullyett, pictured, is the first Yukoner to receive the Louis St-Laurent Award of Excellence from the Canadian Bar Association for his work as a community builder and mentor in the territory. (Gabrielle Plonka/Yukon News)
Tom Ullyett wins lifetime achievement award from the Canadian Bar Association

Ullyett has worked in the Yukon’s justice ecosystem for 36 years as a public sector lawyer and mentor

The Blood Ties outreach van will now run seven nights a week, thanks to a boost in government funding. Logan Godin, coordinator, and Jesse Whelen, harm reduction counsellor, are seen here on May 12, 2020. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Blood Ties outreach van running seven nights a week with funding boost

The Yukon government is ramping up overdose response, considering safe supply plan

Ranj Pillai speaks to media about business relief programs in Whitehorse on April 1, 2020. The Yukon government announced Feb.25 that it will extend business support programs until September. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
Government extends business relief programs to September, launches new loan

“It really gives folks some help with supporting their business with cash flow.”

Whitehorse City Hall. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
A look at decisions made by Whitehorse City Council this week

Bylaw amendment Whitehorse city council is moving closer with changes to a… Continue reading

Susie Rogan is a veteran musher with 14 years of racing experience and Yukon Journey organizer. (Yukon Journey Facebook)
Yukon Journey mushers begin 255-mile race

Eleven mushers are participating in the race from Pelly Crossing to Whitehorse

Legislative assembly on the last day of the fall sitting in Whitehorse on Nov. 22, 2018. As the legislature prepares to return on March 4, the three parties are continuing to finalize candidates in the territory’s 19 ridings. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Nine new candidates confirmed in Yukon ridings

It has been a busy two weeks as the parties try to firm up candidates

David Malcolm, 40, has been charged with assaulting and attempting to disarm a police officer after an incident in Whitehorse on Feb. 18. (Phil McLachlan/Capital News)
Man resists arrest, assaults officer

A Whitehorse man has been charged with assaulting and attempting to disarm… Continue reading

Yukon Energy in Whitehorse on Aug. 4, 2020. A site on Robert Service Way near the Alaska Highway has been selected as the future home of Yukon Energy’s energy storage project. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Site selected for Yukon Energy battery project

Planned to be in service by the end of 2022

Most Read