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B.C. Health Minister gives Fraser Health 150 days to hit targets

Along with the good news he delivered on the province committing to redevelopment of Royal Columbian Hospital on Tuesday, Health Minister Mike de Jong issued a directive to Fraser Health to improve five key areas of care in all of its facilities within the next 150 days.

The measures and targets included reducing "unacceptably high" congestion of patients in hallways, decreased infection rates, faster admittance from emergency departments to hospital wards, faster hip-replacement surgeries and a reduction in the length of stay in Fraser Health hospitals.

"Setting the targets is the easy part. Accomplishing them is going to be the hard part for all of us," de Jong told RCH and Fraser Health staff. "Roll up your sleeves, we've got some work to do."

Fraser Health board chair David Mitchell took up the gauntlet thrown down by de Jong.

"I am confident working together we can meet these goals," he said.

New Westminster NDP MLA Dawn Black said the directives are a tall order.

"It's a big challenge considering the age and state of the facility. And I didn't see anything in the funding to help facilitate the improvements he is demanding," Black said.

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