HSC says new endoscopy unit will cut wait times, enhance care for thoracic conditions
New unit will help patients get procedures they need sooner, foundation says
It's been operating for more than three months, but on Tuesday, the Health Sciences Centre Foundation gave officials and media a peek inside its new thoracic surgery and endoscopy unit.
The new clinic, named after former Headingley mayor Wilf Taillieu, is expected to reduce wait times and improve care for patients with esophageal or lung cancer, and other thoracic conditions.
Before the clinic started operating in July, officials say esophageal cancer patients were regularly bumped from operating rooms at the Health Sciences Centre when patients with cases that were more urgent needed to be operated on, said Ronan Segrave, chief operating officer at HSC.
Now, these procedures can happen within the new clinic as scheduled.
"This gives our patients peace of mind that their appointment time will be honoured, and it also reduces the burden on our operating rooms and on our emergency department," he said.
The opening of the clinic will also help diagnose and treat lung cancer more quickly, he said.
"Previously, in some cases patients would start treatment without even getting a definitive lung cancer diagnosis because actually getting that diagnosis took too long," he said.
"That meant some people had to have surgeries and radiation treatments and invasive procedures that turned out actually to be clinically unnecessary."
The foundation said that more than $3 million in donations helped buy new equipment and fund the space.
Those fundraising efforts were spearheaded by Taillieu's wife, Mavis, after he died from esophageal cancer in 2016.
At Tuesday's event, she said she wanted to do something to help others fighting the "hideous disease" that claimed her husband's life.