In July, 1987 the Calgary Firefighters Burn Treatment Centre opened at a total cost of $1.2 million, with all funds coming from private sources. The Burn Treatment Centre consists of an 8 bed unit with the ability to increase to 12 and cares for approximately 50 patients per year, with an average length of stay of 25 days. It provides treatment and therapy for burn victims as well as those who suffer from frostbite, hypothermia and other skin-loss injuries. Many of those same patients return for outpatient care, sometimes for many years depending on the severity of the injuries.
On October 29, 2003, the Calgary Firefighters Burn Treatment Centre reopened after extensive renovations totalling $2.55 million dollars, of which $1 million was funded through donations from the CFBTS, making this facility a Centre of Excellence in Alberta for burn victims.
This year, on November 23rd, the CFBTS presented a donation of $500,000; bringing the total raised since 1978 to just over $4 million.
For burn victims, the road to recovery is often long and difficult but with a newly renovated Calgary Firefighters Burn Treatment Centre their recovery will have the help of some first-rate equipment and a highly trained staff. The renovations and expansion of the Calgary Firefighters Burn Treatment Centre have enabled the following improvements:
- “It’s gratifying to be able to contribute to the ongoing changes in burn treatment equipment and technology. The ongoing education of the nurses will ensure this unit is on the leading edge of patient care and continues to be a center of excellence for burn victims in Alberta.”
Bob Hunter, former CFBTS vice presidentFour new monitoring/isolation rooms, which allow for individualized climate controls and reversible positive/negative airflow for infection control.
- Cardiac monitors, equipment panels and bed dockers were added to all the rooms for the purpose of ECG monitoring and management of equipment. Each private isolation room also features a ceiling-mounted patient lift.
- The installation of a membrane air barrier to allow for higher-than-average humidity levels, hepafiltered air as well as upgrades to the heating and cooling systems to optimize patient comfort.
- Infection control was improved with the addition of hallway wash sinks and private rooms with individual bathrooms.
- Lighting in treatment and patient rooms has been improved through the use of ceiling examining lights.
- Treatment rooms have been enlarged and a state of the art shower stretcher added for better wound treatment and ease of providing advanced pain control techniques. These rooms have also been equipped with suction and medical gases.
- Redevelopment of the nurses’ station, medication room and other support areas has improved working spaces. An education room was added to facilitate educational presentations and a nurse’s lounge was added.
- New TV’s for diversion during treatments and entertainment for the patient.
- Education is an essential part of providing excellent patient care and the donations have enabled twelve nurses to attend burn conferences to advance their knowledge of burn practice and research.
- The donations have also allowed for the purchase of equipment that has been greatly appreciated by patients and their families.
- Tilting Wheelchair
- Platform Walker
- Roho Cushions
- Patient Lifts
- Furniture for patient rooms and family visiting lounge.
The Calgary Firefighters Burn Treatment Society’s year-round fundraising efforts have helped burn unit staff stay up-to-date with advancements in burn care and treatment.
Now, with upgrades to the treatment centre, the society’s efforts have helped give residents in southern Alberta, southeastern British Columbia, northern Montana and southwestern Saskatchewan a state-of-the-art burn treatment facility.