The Royal Inland Hospital Patient Care Tower Project in Kamloops has reached a significant milestone, bringing the hospital project another step closer to enhancing care for patients in Kamloops and the Thompson Cariboo Shuswap region, through a new state-of-the-art tower. The project has reached the Topping Off milestone, bringing the concrete phase to completion, as the tower reaches its full nine-storey height. With the structural steel phase underway, residents can look forward to the tower opening its doors to patients in the summer of 2022. “I’m excited to see the progress on the Patient Care Tower Project at Royal Inland Hospital,” said Health Minister Adrian Dix. “This tower is going to form an important part of enhancing care for people in Kamloops and the entire region and is part of our ongoing commitment to the people in the Thompson Cariboo Shuswap region.” Interior Health gathered with its partners to mark the Topping Off milestone. Following all COVID-19 safety protocols, RIH staff and community stakeholders were invited to sign a 12-foot steel beam before it was hoisted and placed in its permanent location as part of the Patient Care Tower. “The new tower will create an environment, welcoming to all, in which our physicians and staff will be able to do what they do best – provide high-quality care, which will lead to better outcomes and improved health and wellness for the Thompson-Cariboo region,” said Interior Health Board Chair Doug Cochrane. The Royal Inland Hospital Patient Care Tower Project is a $417-million project to construct a nine-storey hospital tower at RIH. The new tower is designed from a patient-centred and elder-friendly perspective, with extensive input from hospital staff, physicians and other stakeholders. “Watching the Patient Care Tower progress since construction began has been uplifting,” said Thompson Regional Hospital District chair Ken Christian. “As one of only two tertiary hospitals in Interior Health, RIH is vital to all residents in the Thompson Nicola Regional District and we are looking forward to the day it opens to patients in summer 2022.” The RIH Patient Care Tower will feature single-patient rooms equipped with their own washroom, enhancing privacy and infection prevention and control measures. It will also include child and adolescent mental health services, maternal and child health services, respiratory therapy services, surgical suites, a mental health and substance use inpatient unit, a rooftop helipad as well as patient registration and retail space. “On behalf of all of our donors, the RIH Foundation is proud to support the RIH Patient Care Tower Project,” said Heidi Coleman, Chief Executive Officer, RIH Foundation. “We are very grateful for all of the support we have already received for this exciting project and look forward to continuing to raise funds for both the tower and ongoing needs in the hospital.” Construction began on the Patient Care Tower in September 2018. It will open to patients in summer 2022 and Phase 2 renovations will commence shortly thereafter, including significant renovation and expansion to the emergency department, pediatrics, post-anaesthetic recovery and the morgue. As part of Interior Health’s commitment to environmental sustainability and green buildings, the new tower is being designed and constructed to achieve Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold Certification, helping to create a healthy and healing patient environment and workplace. The building’s design also features wood finishes which aligns with B.C.’s Wood First Act. The project budget is shared between the Ministry of Health ($203 million), Interior Health ($22 million), the TRHD ($172 million) and the RIH Foundation ($20 million).