Is an extended health care centre viable for Sun Peaks?

Proposed blueprints for the new building that will house the health centre.
Proposed blueprints for the new building that will house the health centre.

“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” Benjamin Franklin.

The Sun Peaks Mountain Resort Municipality (SPMRM) is taking Benjamin Franklin’s words to heart when it comes to the expansion of community medical services. Before diving in head first they’ve opted to create a business plan to ensure the expanded health care centre’s viability, with help from the B.C. government.

Announced at the beginning of May, the Ministry of Health awarded SPMRM a $50,000 grant to assist in a business plan to determine whether the needs of the community warrant expanded health services.

“I’m so pleased that Terry Lake supported us on this request,” says Sun Peaks’ mayor, Al Raine. “Before we embark upon any kind of commitment I think it’s really worthwhile to sit down and do an in-depth need assessment.”

The municipality has hired an outside consultant who specia

lizes in health issues to answer various questions and create a viable business plan. Questions will be addressed which speak to the anticipated demands of the health facility by the population, and how many people would use a family doctor’s services if they were available.

These questions will be more difficult to answer for Sun Peaks compared to other communities as the population fluctuates from season to season. Not only this, but the health centre facilities would services other areas, such as Whitecroft, Heffley Lake and Louise Creek.

“Most communities don’t have these kinds of complicated surges of people in the community, so the first real job of this plan will be to assess that,” explains Raine. “Once we understand the needs of Sun Peaks we can then determine what kind of facility we would need to

service that need and operate them without burdening tax payers at both the local level and the provincial level.”

The new building, which will house the municipal offices along with Sun Peaks Health Centre and Sun Peaks Resort Corporation ski patrol, has been architecturally laid out but plans to move forward on this building will come once the completion of the viability study produces the community’s medical service needs.

Visit the Sun Peaks Health Centre website or the Sun Peaks Mountain Resort Municipality website for more information.