Interior Health approves funding for 70 new residential care beds in lakecity

Funding has been approved for 70 new residential care beds in Williams Lake, Interior Health announced Thursday.

Funding has been approved for 70 new residential care beds in Williams Lake, Interior Health announced Thursday.

The exact locations of the new beds will be determined by the competitive bid process, IH said in a press release, noting a total of 243 beds have been approved across the region.

More residential beds for the lakecity is something Mayor Walt Cobb described as very good news.

“We have had this need forever,” Cobb said Thursday. “It was Interior Health that did the review to come up with the numbers of beds. We got a lot with the 70, but how long have we been asking?”

Now that the funding has been approved for the beds, finding someone willing to provide those beds will be the next step.

“I don’t even think there are that many units in Retirement Concepts. We were looking at adding onto Glen Arbor but those aren’t care beds, so it would have to be Retirement Concepts or Deni House, although they don’t have any room there either,” Cobb said.

It would take two to three years to build something new, he added.

To ensure the competitive bid process is as timely as possible, procurement activities will begin this month with a Request for Proposals, Interior Health said in a press release, noting it is anticipated contracts will be awarded by mid-winter and new beds will be completed by summer 2018.