Children, Families Benefit from Expanded Stollery Pediatric Operating Suite

Premier Rachel Notley officially opens the new Stollery redeveloped operative room suite with the help of special guests.
Premier Rachel Notley officially opens the new Stollery redeveloped operative room suite with the help of special guests.

New operating rooms, expanded hours and state-of-the-art equipment mean more surgeries can be performed with better outcomes for children and families.

The redeveloped space has five operating rooms and two procedure rooms with modern infrastructure and equipment. This follows a recent expansion in hours for the short stay surgical unit, which has resulted in a dramatic reduction in surgery postponements over the past year. The changes will result in an increase of up to 2,800 surgeries per year.

“Nothing is more stressful than having a seriously sick or injured child. The Stollery provides incredible care to Alberta families when their kids need it most. I’m very proud of this expansion because it means even more families will benefit from a space that was designed based on their needs.”

Rachel Notley, Premier


To help ensure the expansion was designed with the interests of children and their families in mind, a mother with several children who have required surgery at the Stollery provided input into the design.

“It’s challenging to develop a space that meets the surgical standard of care, but is also patient-friendly and will accommodate families during a stressful time. The family voice was respected through planning and implementation. It was truly a collaborative process.”

Shannon Robertson, member of Stollery Family-Centred Care Committee


The patient-centred model will provide improved outcomes in a more comfortable setting. It also fosters a stronger training and teaching environment and allows for better integration of developing technologies and innovative procedures.

“When children need surgery, it’s a stressful time for young patients and their families. This redesigned operating suite will enable our health providers to deliver quality, patient- and family-centred care that will ease anxieties and improve both patient outcomes and patient experiences.”

Dr. Verna Yiu, President and CEO, Alberta Health Services


All operating rooms have been designed with modular and mobile equipment to meet the needs of all surgery types. This allows more surgeries to be performed through more efficient use of space and equipment.

Since operational hours for the short stay surgical unit increased to 24 hours/day, three days a week, the number of postponed surgeries has dropped by 93 per cent. In the 12-month period prior to the expansion in hours, 198 surgeries were postponed due to a lack of available recovery beds. In the first year after the new hours were added, surgery postponements dropped to 14. This fall, the operational hours for these recovery beds will increase further to 24 hours/day, five days a week. This increase is anticipated to further reduce the rate of postponement.

“This investment in state-of-the-art, operating-room suites and procedure rooms and pre-op and recovery spaces means medical professionals can provide more specialized, compassionate care and Stollery families will receive added privacy to focus on the needs of their child.”

Mike House, President and CEO, Stollery Children’s Hospital Foundation


The $36-million project was supported with $33.7 million from the government and $2.5 million from the Stollery Children’s Hospital Foundation and took 29 months to complete.

Quick Facts

  • The Stollery Children’s Hospital is recognized nationally and internationally for specialized surgical services, including expertise as a major pediatric trauma centre, and is the second-largest pediatric hospital in Canada.
  • More than 9,500 surgeries were performed at the Stollery Children’s Hospital operating suite between April 1, 2015 and March 31, 2016.
  • The pediatric surgical caseload has grown by an average of 3.6 per cent annually and is expected to continue at that rate.