Eli Cranmer & Bill Cranmer singing 'Namgis feast song at the anniversary event.

Toasting the health of Alert Bay centre

The Cormorant Island Community Health Centre in Alert Bay celebrates its 10th anniversary.

Gazette staff

ALERT BAY—North Island rural and Aboriginal health care marked a significant milestone Friday with the 10th anniversary of the Cormorant Island Community Health Centre in Alert Bay.

Ten years ago, the ‘Namgis First Nation partnered with the Village of Alert Bay, the Ministry of Health, the Mt. Waddington Regional Hospital District and the Vancouver Island Health Authority to build the $5.6 million centre. The facility replaced three versions of the St. George’s Hospital, which had provided health care to the region since 1909.

“I would like to pass along my warmest congratulations to the staff at Cormorant Island Community Health Centre for providing ten years of great care to the residents of Alert Bay,” said Health Minister Margaret MacDiarmid. “Thank you for helping make a difference to the lives of patients and their families.”

The celebration was attended by local health care workers, ‘Namgis leaders, civic leaders and VIHA Board chair Don Hubbard.

“On behalf of VIHA’s board and executive team, let me offer our heartfelt congratulations on this wonderful partnership,” said Hubbard.

Located across the street from the ‘Namgis Health Centre, the Cormorant Island Health Care Centre was designed to integrate with other health services in Alert Bay to provide a more seamless system of health care for the community. The ‘Namgis First Nation donated the land for the health care centre, as well as the beautiful cedar logs which give the centre its traditional look and feel.

“Providing health services in rural and isolated communities is a challenge,” said Ian Knipe, VIHA”s Director of Aboriginal Health.  “Our Aboriginal Health team congratulates the community in celebrating ten years of improving the health of Northern Vancouver Island residents.”

The Cormorant Island Community Health Care Centre includes a medical clinic, acute care beds, multi-level care beds, Emergency, laboratory and X-ray services as well as Community Health programs including public health nursing and continuing care.

“The Cormorant Island Community Health Centre is a wonderful example of how we can work together to provide quality, culturally appropriate care to all British Columbians,” said Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation Minister Ida Chong. “I’d like to congratulate and thank the staff at the Health Centre and the ‘Namgis First Nation for their dedication over the past 10 years.”