May 10th, 2021

Out-of-hospital surgical suite opens

By GILLIAN SLADE on September 19, 2019.

An operating room in the Southland Surgical Centre for day surgery that has opened in Medicine Hat.

A unique surgical suite with operating room for day surgeries beyond the hospital has officially opened in Medicine Hat.

Business partners Ryan Jackson and Alberta Stark are behind Southland Surgical Centre, 105-7 Strachan Bay.

“There’s a significant need for this type of a facility and being able to offer it to local dentists and physicians as well as to help the folks that are actually looking for a local solution especially for the ones that travel to Lethbridge for example,” said Jackson.

Dental surgeries are already taking place but it will ultimately include a range of surgeries. This means people who have been travelling to Lethbridge to have wisdom teeth extracted will no longer need to do so.

Jackson says they’re working toward doing WCB surgeries and other elective surgeries in the new year.

“We still are in the process of receiving accreditation from the College on that,” said Jackson. “We are accredited (currently) for general anesthesia, out-patient oral surgeries.”

Surgeons who would like to rent the surgical suite for day surgeries can do so. A surgeon in town would rent the facility that is fully equipped, complete with operating staff and others. That surgeon pays a fee to the owners. Patients then go to the surgical centre rather than the hospital for day surgery. The general surgeons are paid directly by Alberta Health like they would be if they operated at the hospital.

Jackson says Southland Surgical Centre will not be charging the patient a fee.

“It is a turnkey solution for those physicians who want to utilize the space and aren’t able to get enough surgical time at the hospital, which is always an issue,” said Jackson. “It’s a hospital-grade facility. There was no expense spared as far as making sure it was top of the line, state of the art.”

On the main floor of the facility there are 2,703 square feet that includes the operating room, a recovery room with two-beds, main reception and a medical office. Upstairs there are medical device reprocessing facilities that exceed other local sterilization and cross contamination processes with standards required by medical and dental authorities.

There is also a team of board-certified medical anesthesiologists to provide anesthesia service.

Jackson says he and Stark became involved in establishing the surgical suite because they owned and rented out the space that someone else was developing as a surgical suite. In the process that party went bankrupt.

“Which ended up having us purchase the assets that were in the space. As a landlord one does have some recourse around improvements … We kind of picked the ball up and ran it to the end zone,” said Jackson.

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