Bethesda Regional Health Centre in Steinbach will be getting three new operating rooms. 

That announcement was made Friday morning at the hospital by Steinbach MLA Kelvin Goertzen. 

"The nearly $30 million new surgical centre will increase surgical capacity locally and throughout the region," says Goertzen. "This capital project will enhance the service profile of the facility in Manitoba's third largest city and provide the capacity for growth."

According to Jane Curtis, Chief Executive Officer for Southern Health, the three new operating rooms will replace the existing two theatres. 

The hospital expansion project includes the following:

  • three operating theatres with a modern boom system for surgical and anesthesia equipment;
  • pre-operative consult room and 12 patient care treatment spots for pre/post-operative care;
  • sterile supply room and a surgical equipment disinfection and sterilization room;
  • reception and waiting area for patients and family;
  • new expanded lab to meet space requirements for modern diagnostic lab equipment;
  • new cultural space to support multi-denominational services including Indigenous cultural ceremonies such as smudging; and
  • expanded space to support physician and resident services including three on-call sleep rooms.
Dignitaries at Friday's announcement (Golden West).(Left to right) Southern Health CEO Jane Curtis, Bethesda Foundation Chair Garth Reimer, Bethesda Chief of Staff Dr. Christo Minnaar, Steinbach MLA Kelvin Goertzen, Steinbach Mayor Earl Funk and Provencher MP Ted Falk

Goertzen explains that Friday's announcement will bring the total cost of the project to about $64 million. In 2021, additional acute medicine beds were announced.

"I feel this announcement is enormous for our community," says Steinbach Mayor Earl Funk.

Funk says he believes this project will help the city attract healthcare professionals, adding it will help residents of Steinbach and area to continue receiving quality healthcare. 

"They will be able to be close to home and get the health care that they've needed," adds Funk. "For so many years we've had to send them to other communities."

Funk says he also believes this expansion will strengthen the community and inter-municipal relations.

"This is truly an incredible announcement for Southern Health, for the community of Steinbach and for the entire region," says Provencher Member of Parliament Ted Falk.

He notes this will save people from having to travel back and forth to Winnipeg. Falk says it will also trim wait times.

The Bethesda Foundation has pledged $8 million towards the surgical unit and palliative beds in the expansion. Board Chair Garth Reimer says the existing two suites are nearly 60 years old, as they were built when the hospital was first constructed in 1964.

"It's always been our priority of the foundation to get the surgery improved and upgraded and Minister Goertzen has indeed hit a grand slam by bringing that project home," says Reimer.

Construction on the first phase at the hospital began in August 2022. That phase includes renovating a section of the Community Services Building to establish six treatment bays for renal dialysis along with pharmacy upgrades that support the delivery of chemotherapy services. These changes will help establish the facility as a regional hub for cancer services. The first phase of the project will be finished by this summer and new renal services are planned to launch this fall. Construction on the overall project, including the three new operating theatres is expected to be complete by 2025.


With files from Lexi Olifirowich