VIDEO: B.C. has Canada’s only mobile medical unit

The unit can be mobilized in as quickly as eight hours after receiving a request

B.C.’s mobile medical unit is the only one of its kind in the country.

Originally created for the 2010 Olympics and Paralympics, the unit was on display in downtown Vancouver on Wednesday ahead of the BC Quality Health Forum this week.

The province purchased it after Vancouver Games to support emergency situations, with funding from the Ministry of Health shared among all health authorities.

The unit and its team of doctors, nurses and paramedics has been to more than 60 sites across the province, as far north as Terrace, as far east as Golden, and all over Vancouver Island.

READ MORE: Roughly one person died every two days from drug overdoses in Surrey

The team can prepare and mobilize the unit in as quickly as eight hours after receiving a request, and provides treatment during emergencies, public health outreach and renovation support.

Two years ago, it was deployed to the Downtown Eastside to assist with the opioid crisis. The unit was set up on Hastings Street for seven months.

Peter Hennecki, clinical operations director, said the unit was the difference between life and death for patients that required immediate care.

“Not having this kind of unit there as an initial response, when things were at their worst – it did save lives,” said Hennecki.

The unit weighs about 80,000 lbs. and comes with a supply trailer. Together, they have a footprint of 125 feet by 60 feet. When fully setup, it has nearly 1,100 square feet of clinical space and the capacity to hold up to eight stretchers. When not in use, they are stored in a 10,000-square-foot warehouse in Delta.

The unit’s next planned deployment is to Richmond General Hospital, where the team is running a disaster medical course.

“If we got the call right now to go somewhere, we would pack up and go to the emergency,” Hennecki said.



joti.grewal@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

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

 

The mobile medical unit weighs about 80,000 lbs. and comes with a supply trailer. (Joti Grewal)

Just Posted

Interior Health reports three additional COVID-19 cases in region

The number of cases in the region since the beginning of the pandemic are now at 492

Trail Kiwanians wrap up $10,000 hospital donation

The new KBRH emergency department opened its doors a few weeks ago

LeRoi Foundation donates to hospital in Trail

$5,000 comes to KBRH via Community Foundations Canada and ECSF

Trail market goes garlic

The event goes Saturday in downtown Trail from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Kootenay teachers’ union going to labour relations board over COVID-19 related work conditions

Union issues open letter to premier, education minister, health minister and Dr. Bonnie Henry.

3 new deaths due to COVID-19 in B.C., 139 new cases

B.C. confirms 40 ‘historic cases,’ as well

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg dies at 87

The court’s second female justice, died Friday at her home in Washington

Emaciated grizzly found dead on central B.C. coast as low salmon count sparks concern

Grizzly was found on Gwa’sala-‘Nakwaxda’xw territory in Smith Inlet, 60K north of Port Hardy

VIDEO: B.C. to launch mouth-rinse COVID-19 test for kids

Test involves swishing and gargling saline in mouth and no deep-nasal swab

Young Canadians have curtailed vaping during pandemic, survey finds

The survey funded by Heart & Stroke also found the decrease in vaping frequency is most notable in British Columbia and Ontario

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

B.C. teachers file Labour Relations Board application over COVID-19 classroom concerns

The application comes as B.C.’s second week of the new school year comes to a close

CHARTS: Beyond Metro Vancouver, COVID-19 cases in B.C. haven’t increased much recently

COVID-19 case counts outside of Metro Vancouver have been level since July

70-year-old punched in the head in dispute over disability parking space in Nanaimo

Senior’s turban knocked off in incident at mall parking lot

Most Read