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100 years Friday, Sept. 14, 2012






Welcome Patients and visitors are invited to learn more about the hospital’s history throughout September when archived photos will be on display in the main hospital lobby. The photos reflect historical highlights and the many changes that have taken place at Royal Inland since its construction on the current site 100 years ago.

Blood Pressure Cuff / 1950s

INSIDE Congratulations, RIH! .................................. 2 Technology Changing Health Care . ............ 3 Outpatient Care Important at RIH . ............. 6 Med Students Learn Much at RIH ............... 7 Hospital Close to Woman’s Heart ................ 8

Special Edition to The Kamloops Daily News

100 Years – A Look Back at RIH History Royal Inland Hospital has a long-standing history of providing great medical care in Kamloops. Built in 1885, Royal Inland was the first hospital in the B.C. Interior. It was originally built on Lorne Street with 14 beds under the direction of the sole physician, Dr. S. Tunstall. Back then, doctors sometimes had house calls that took them a hundred miles away, travelling by freight train, horse and buggy, and on foot. In 1912 a new hospital was completed at the current location. On Sept. 14 a ceremony coinciding with the city’s centennial opened the hospital. The Duke of Connaught, then GovernorGeneral of Canada, was present along with other dignitaries. It was a great day for Kamloops. The building was constructed by contractors Johnson and Company, built of locally made Kamloops bricks. The hospital was comprised of two wings. The east wing contained rooms for the student nurses and nursing school staff. The 1911 cornerstone from this building can still be seen on display outside the front doors in the breezeway of the current hospital. The new facility was really put to the test in 1918, when the Spanish influenza blazed through Kamloops and the rest of the country, leaving the hospital unable to cope with the large number

September 14, 1912 — A celebration with his Royal Highness the Duke of Connaught marked the hospital’s opening at its current location 100 years ago today.

of patients. The flu would affect one in six Canadians, killing 30,000 to 50,000 people during the winter of 1918, and nearly decimating many First Nations communities. In 1920, a new laundry building was opened, with student nurses busily keeping up housekeeping duties. A new lab — the third medical laboratory in B.C. — was constructed in 1925, and a new nurses’ home was added in 1927. Later, the Alumnae Tower would be opened in 1964, followed by completion of the nine-storey South Tower. The education and training of nurses in the area was transferred to Cariboo College in the 1970s, marking the end of an era for the School of Nurs-

ing, which had graduated 913 nurses in its 70 years of operation. The North Tower was completed in 1981, replacing the west wing and central block of the original hospital. In 1988 a new four-storey west wing opened and the original 1912 east wing was demolished. Patients and visitors are invited to learn more about the hospital’s history throughout September when archived photos will be on display in the main hospital lobby. The photos reflect historical highlights and the many changes that have taken place at Royal Inland since its construction on the current site 100 years ago.

RIH Planning for Future Needs 2011 Master Site Plan

An artist’s rendering of the vision for the future Royal Inland Hospital, as presented in the 2011 Master Site Plan. Phase One of the hospital redevelopment focuses on the Clinical Services Building on Columbia Street.

On July 11, Premier Christy Clark was in Kamloops to make an exciting announcement — the first phase of the redevelopment of Royal Inland Hospital, which will include a new clinical services building, medi-

cal teaching space and more on-site parking, is moving forward. “I know that the future of Royal Inland Hospital is an important issue to the region to meet the growing and changing needs of families,” said

“Our master site plan established a long-term vision for future development at Royal Inland that is both comprehensive and galvanizing,” said Royal Inland Hospital Administrator Marg Brown. “It’s an exciting time. Our future looks bright,” she added with a smile. Premier Clark. “That’s why we are moving forward with this multiphased redevelopment project.” The first phase of redevelopment includes constructing clinic space for outpatient services. The building could also provide teaching space for the UBC medical school program as well as much needed parking and improved vehicle and pedestrian access to the hospital. The project is estimated to cost about $80 million, to be shared with the Thompson Regional Hospital District. Detailed construction costs will be determined when the business case is approved in early 2013 and construction could begin in late 2013. Matthew Stubbings is a respiratory therapist at Royal Inland who has worked in several other hospitals. He said the recent announcement is good news. “At other hospitals complaints involved things like lack of physicians or long waits in the Emergency de-

partment,” he said. “It’s a credit to the staff here that the biggest thing I hear in Kamloops is not about patient care but the lack of parking and the difficulty for the elderly to access the hospital; walking up those stairs and steep slope. “Because my work involves patients from several departments in the hospital, I’m also very familiar with the cramped quarters we are dealing with. Throughout the hospital, space is at a premium.” In June 2011, Interior Health completed a master site plan for Royal Inland Hospital which will be used to guide future development at the site. The plan highlighted priority areas requiring expansion and redesign, including hospital site access and parking, surgical services, inpatient areas and ambulatory care. To proceed with future work, the site requires redevelopment of roadway access routes to the facility, the establishment of pedestrian pathways and better parking infrastructure.

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Friday, Sept. 14, 2012





Special Edition to The Kamloops Daily News

Congratulations, RIH!


On behalf of the Government of British Columbia, I would like to congratulate Royal Inland Hospital on its 100th anniversary at its Columbia Street location.

erations of people and families, providing many essential services such as neonatal intensive care, trauma, lung health, psychiatry and more. As the past is celebrated, our government is also looking ahead. I recently had the opportunity to be in Kamloops to announce the first phase of the redevelopment of Royal Inland Hospital. This includes a new clinical services building, medical teaching space and more on-site parking. I am proud that our government is working to meet the growing and chang-

ing needs of families in the region and pleased to say we are moving ahead with this multi-phased redevelopment project. Since 2007, the Government of British Columbia has made about $80 million in investments at Royal Inland Hospital. This includes $27.5 million for second floor redevelopment and new MRI, $17 million for Hillside Centre mental health facility, $11 million to relocate the intensive care unit and $10.75 million for medical device reprocessing department redevelopment. Again, congratulations on 100 years and thank you for your commitment to excellence in health care for the people who come to Royal Inland Hospital. — Christy Clark, Premier, B.C.

As MLA for Kamloops-North Thompson, I would like to offer congratulations on the 100th anniversary of Royal Inland Hospital’s Columbia Street location. A lot has changed since 1912, but one thing that hasn’t is the compassionate care that’s provided by health professionals at the facility. On behalf of my constituents, I thank these dedicated health-care workers for all they do to ensure patient well-being and safety. Volunteers also play a huge role in the success of the hospital and I would like to thank them as well. After a proud past, our government is planning for a bright future for Royal Inland Hospital. I was pleased to be a part of the recent announcement by Premier Christy Clark for the first phase of the redevelopment of Royal Inland Hospital. This work is expected to include a new clinical services building, medical teaching space and more on-site parking with much better access to the hospital. A lot of time and effort has been put into the Royal Inland Hospital redevelopment plan and it is great to see the project is moving ahead to the next phase. Royal Inland Hospital serves the entire region, and for a century people from the area have been coming to the Columbia Street location to access expert medical care. I’m proud that Kamloops is home to such an outstanding medical centre. Again, congratulations on 100 years.

It is my great pleasure to offer congratulations on the 100th anniversary of Royal Inland Hospital’s Columbia Street location. Royal Inland Hospital is the heart of the community and that has remained constant over the last century. Kamloops residents know that when they need quality medical care, they will get it at Royal Inland. I am always impressed by the calibre of staff, physicians and volunteers at Royal Inland Hospital and they deserve our gratitude. Looking forward, I am very pleased to see the Royal Inland redevelopment beginning to take shape. I was honoured to stand next to Premier Christy Clark as she was in Kamloops recently to announce the first phase of the project, which promises great things for the future of health care in the region. This is an exciting milestone; having quality health care is a priority for our government and this project will provide even greater care for families upon completion. Royal Inland Hospital has a top-notch track record of providing high-level health care over the past 100 years. With redevelopment plans underway, the next 100 years look just as great. Again, happy anniversary to Royal Inland Hospital on 100 years at its Columbia Street location.

Since opening at its current location on Columbia Street a century ago, Royal Inland Hospital has played an integral role in this region. As we mark this milestone, I find myself thinking about what a hospital means to a community — it is so much more than a collection of bricks and mortar. The people working here bear witness to dreams and heartaches, ranging from the birth of a firstborn to the passing of a loved one. And the residents living in the surrounding area count on Royal Inland and our staff in their times of need. This month’s celebration gives us a chance to reflect on our past and look forward to the future. So much has changed over the last 100 years, it is hard to imagine what is yet to come. The rapid pace of technology, an increasingly aging population, and sobering fiscal challenges are just a few factors influencing the future of hospital care right now. Yet I know we are up to the challenge, just as residents in the community were in the early 1900s when they rallied to develop a new and “modern” hospital, in the face of disease, war and depression. My sincere congratulations to all those who currently work at Royal Inland, and my thanks to those in the past who helped shape this hospital into the leading tertiary-care centre that it is today.

— Terry Lake, MLA, Kamloops-North Thompson

— Kevin Krueger, MLA, Kamloops-South Thompson

— Dr. Robert Halpenny, President & CEO, Interior Health

Amid a sea of change in the healthcare system over the past century, one thing that has remained constant is the quality of care provided by health professionals. These workers are to be thanked for their dedication. The B.C. Interior has a rich history and as the first hospital in the region, Royal Inland is a proud part of that past. Over the last 100 years, Royal Inland Hospital has grown to serve many gen-

Top: Graduated from the RIH lab program 30 years ago, medical lab technician Shanon Leighton works in the hematology section of the RIH Lab. She is shown manually counting blood cells under a microscope. Middle: Stacks of petri dishes are organized by colour ready to be used in the lab at RIH. Bottom: Anatomical pathology technician Tanya Kilborn looks through specimens at the RIH lab.





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Technology Changing the Face of Health Care






The use of technology at RIH offers both innovations and efficiencies.


RIH intensive care nurses use hands-free communicators to reach each other from anywhere on the unit.

The revolution has impacted the surgical field, as well. “Exploratory surgery is now an historical term, with MRI or CT providing precise diagnostic information non-invasively,” says Dr. Bilbey. “Most biopsies are now performed using image guidance, offering greater safety and precision compared with prior techniques.” In 2011, Interior Health was the first health authority to incorporate voice recognition software on a wide scale, implementing the technology for transcribing of physician reports in diagnostic imaging departments in its acute sites. This summer, the health authority began building on that success and is in the midst of rolling out the technology for all physician reports at nine locations, including Royal Inland. “Our goal is to be both innovative and efficient in the delivery of highquality health care,” Mal Griffin, Interior Health Chief Information Officer, says of the project. “By introducing voice recognition technology across the health authority, we will achieve over $1 million in savings and (create) better turnaround

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time for vital physician reports.” Technology has also allowed patients to consult with specialists miles away, virtually, via Telehealth. Telehealth is an advanced video-conferencing system that saves families the expense of travel and helps them avoid what can be physically taxing trips. A nurse is present in the conference room at the patient’s side throughout the consultation, and charts everything. “A patient from 100 Mile House could have diagnostic biopsy done at Royal Inland, then come in here to consult with experts in Kelowna,” says Sarah Farmer, Ambulatory Care/Telehealth Manager. “The video image and sound is very good quality. It allows the specialist to measure how the patient is doing emotionally, observe how healthy they may or may not be. “And it is reassuring to the patient because it really is virtually the same as being in the room with that doctor.” To learn more about the role of technology in health care, check out the telemedicine video on Interior Health’s YouTube channel at com.

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“Call Justin,” registered nurse Deanne Smith says from her post within the bright, modern intensivecare unit at Royal Inland Hospital. A short beep and a man’s voice responds, “Justin here.” The hands-free Vocera communicators, which are not far off from the communicators depicted in Star Trek all those years ago, allow nurses to speak to one another on a unit that spans 1,440 square metres. In fact there are many examples of technology at work at RIH reminiscent of those old Star Trek episodes when Bones would have Captain Kirk healed up in a jiffy after a quick diagnostic scan in the sick bay. We’re not there yet, of course. Diagnostic equipment such as MRI and CT scanners still fill a room. But the pace of medical technological advancement is remarkable, and it is changing the way practitioners deliver health care. Thanks to the leadership of the radiologists and funding support from Canada Health Infoway, Royal Inland was the first facility in the Interior of B.C. to deploy an enterprise Picture Archiving Communication System (PACS). “Radiology is arguably the one area of medicine that has benefited most from technologic advances in the last two decades. Digital imaging progress has resulted in a revolution in diagnosis and patient management,” says Dr. James Bilbey, Chief of Radiology at Royal Inland Hospital. The elimination of x-ray film with the advent of digital imaging acquisition and storage has improved access to current and previous images immeasurably. Accompanied by voice recognition technology, reports can be available to the ordering physician within minutes.

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Special Edition to The Kamloops Daily News

Outpatient Care Important at RIH There have been plenty of changes over the last 100 years at Royal Inland Hospital.

are some plastic surgeries and ear, nose and throat procedures. “Scopes” allow physicians to see images inside the body. Soon, x-ray “virtual” scopes will become standard practice, removing the need for even small incisions. Gastroenterologists and urologists are performing more and more procedures in the ACU, as an increasing number of patients require these services. In turn, the ACU nursing staff is becoming more and more specialized to keep pace with the growing number of outpatient services offered. Renal patients visit the ACU to have

their fistulas (ports) inserted for their life-saving hemodialysis. Cancer patients needing blood transfusions used to make regular visits to the emergency department or an inpatient medical ward. Now, they have this done in the ACU. In fact, the ACU’s IV treatment room for all kinds of therapies has seen a 200 per cent increase in usage in the last three years. The patients are truly the beneficiaries of all these changes. One can only begin to imagine what advances might be made in health care in the next 100 years.



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Bottom: Respiratory therapy veteran, Lucy Lindros, checks the heart rate of patient Bob Peters.

Sarah Farmer, the manager of RIH’s ambulatory care unit.



Top: Life support ventilators and other equipment in the new intensive-care unit.

The campus has grown and evolved, as new towers have been added or renovated to accommodate new healthcare programs and services. The faces of the physicians and nurses providing those services have also changed. But perhaps the greatest change at Royal Inland Hospital over the last century has been to health care itself. Gone are the days when a lengthy hospital stay was the norm for patients recuperating from surgical procedures. These days, some patients having surgery don’t stay in the hospital at all. “We’re doing more and more surgeries as outpatient,” says Sarah Farmer, manager of Royal Inland’s Ambulatory Care Unit. “When you can avoid a hospital stay it’s better – people do better recovering at home, and you avoid the use of general anaesthetic. In the old days, patients were booked in the OR and put to sleep.” The Ambulatory Care Unit (ACU) has become an important cog in the Royal Inland Hospital wheel. There, patients can have their surgeries as day procedures and they can go home the same day. Not only is this better for immune-compromised patients for whom hospital admission can be challenging, but it also helps take pressure off the hospital’s operating rooms, making room for more complex surgeries such as neurosurgery or orthopedics. Many procedures are no longer done in ORs at all. A hernia repair used to require hospital admission. Now, for the most part, it’s a day procedure, as

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Steady Influx of Med Students at RIH






UBC medical students will be a common sight in the halls of Royal Inland Hospital starting this September as part of the UBC Faculty of Medicine Southern Medical Program (SMP).

Dr. Anise Barton, UBC Co-site Clerkship Director, says physicians at RIH enjoy the opportunity to share their expertise with students.

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Bottom: Royal Inland Hospital’s exterior, as seen from Columbia Street.

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Top: Royal Inland Hospital’s health service administrator, Marg Brown, stands in front of the RIH sign facing Columbia Street.


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time they benefit from the educational and experiential opportunities Royal Inland offers as a tertiary- and ruralreferral hospital,” said Hospital Health Services Administrator Marg Brown. Royal Inland has been an Affiliated Regional Centre with the UBC Faculty of Medicine since 2004. In partnership with Interior Health, the SMP delivers clinical training at RIH, Vernon Jubilee Hospital, Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital, and other hospitals and health centres in 22 B.C. Interior communities. Many of the locations, including RIH, are utilized for training medical residents in addition to undergraduates. The SMP admits 32 new students each year as part of an overall UBC medical class of 288 medical undergraduates. It is anticipated that four to eight students from each SMP class will complete their third-year clerkship rotation at RIH.


tremendous amount of work and collaboration has resulted in our ability to offer an exceptional learning experience for our students.” “We are thrilled to have four students help pilot our rotation and encourage them to take advantage of what the City of Kamloops and area has to offer,” said Dr. Gerhard Schumacher, CoSite Clerkship Director for Kamloops. The clerkship rotation at RIH is a direct result of the successful partnership between the UBC Faculty of Medicine and Interior Health, helping to deliver medical education in communities throughout the B.C. Interior. By increasing opportunities for students to train in these communities and gain exposure to the lifestyle, the hope is that many will return to practise upon completion of their residency training. “It’s a great opportunity to have these future doctors and specialists spend time here and in the community. At the same D001099453

RIH is one of four primary training sites for SMP students completing the third year of their UBC medical degrees. Four current UBC students have just landed in Kamloops to begin a year-long pilot of the clinical clerkship rotation offered at RIH. Students from the SMP’s inaugural class – who began their studies in Kelowna in 2011 – will start arriving at RIH in September 2013. Each of the four pilot students will spend the next year learning alongside RIH physicians rotating through 10 different specialities including surgery, emergency medicine, anesthesiology, and psychiatry. One of those students is Laura Kosakoski, a Kamloops native who is excited to return home to complete a portion of her medical studies. “I am really looking forward to working closely with a smaller group of dedicated teachers and the hands-on learning many students do not have the opportunity for in larger centres,” said Kosakoski. “We will be able to make this experience our own and help to shape the experience of the many incoming students in years to come.” “It’s an exciting time for all of the staff and administration at Royal Inland,” said Dr. Anise Barton, Co-Site Clerkship Director for Kamloops. “A

8 Kamloops Daily News Special advertising feature

Friday, Sept. 14, 2012

Special Edition to The Kamloops Daily News

Hospital Close To Woman’s Heart Phyllis Parkes, 99, was born in Kamloops on Dec. 10, 1912, making her one of the first babies to be born in Royal Inland Hospital at its current Columbia Street location. Phyllis grew up on the shores of Shuswap Lake, near Sorrento, and later was in training to be a nurse in St. Joseph’s Hospital in Victoria when she was taken ill and had to drop out. She spent ten years in England, from 1938 to 1948, and received an award from the King for her work in assisting with the war effort. Phyllis has spent most of her life giving back to the Kamloops community. Along with the many organizations she has volunteered with, she also served on the Afternoon Auxiliary at Royal Inland Hospital for 62 years. “RIH is close to my heart,” says Phyllis.

Phyllis Parkes, 99, was one of the first babies born at RIH.

“My husband, children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren have all used our local hospital,” says the almost-centenarian. “My mother is a true Kamloopsian,” says Dick Parkes. “When she volunteered at RIH, everyone knew her as a hometown girl.” Phyllis recalls many warm memories of Royal Inland Hospital and Kamloops friends. In the Pine Grove Care Centre where she now resides, the hometown girl can still sometimes be heard telling stories about her family and old Kamloops. Our community is growing, changing, and strengthening, and Phyllis is proud to know that health care is available at RIH, which is working hard to keep up to the needs of our city.

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100 Years Royal Inland Hospital  

Built in 1885, Royal Inland was the first hospital in the B.C. Interior