Ontario To Invest In Restoration Of London Area Hospital

Archived Release

Ontario To Invest In Restoration Of London Area Hospital

Ministry of Infrastructure

Provincial Investment Will Reduce Waiting Times, Improve Treatment For Area Residents LONDON, ON, Sept. 27 - Residents of London will have improved access to health care thanks to a major provincial government investment in the London Health Sciences Centre. Christopher Bentley, Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities and MPP for London West, made the announcement today on behalf of Minister of Health and Long-Term Care George Smitherman and Minister of Public Infrastructure Renewal David Caplan. "This government investment will give local residents better access to a full range of hospital services," said Bentley. "This project is important to everyone in our community." The provincial investment will improve patient care by completing the redevelopment project and by providing new, state-of-the-art facilities at London Health Sciences Centre to consolidate acute in-patient services at its Victoria and University Hospitals, and close the out-dated South Street Hospital. "The McGuinty government is rebuilding Ontario's public infrastructure, and this project is an essential part of our plan to modernize hospitals, reduce waiting times and upgrade medical equipment in this area and throughout the province," Caplan said. "Our infrastructure investments are helping us build a stronger, healthier and more prosperous province." "This project will ensure people in this community have access to the modern, effective health care they need and deserve," said Smitherman. The Government of Ontario has approved the London Health Sciences Centre project as an alternative financing and procurement project. This means the construction work will be financed and carried out by the private sector, which will assume the financial risks if the project is not finished on time and on budget. Once the hospital is built, it will be publicly owned, controlled and accountable. "This year saw the successful accomplishment of the most complex move of patients and programs ever undertaken in Canada," said Tony Dagnone, President and CEO of London Health Sciences Centre. "Today's announcement ensures that this work will be completed and in several years we will have a new, modern home for women's and children's health, acute mental health and medical/surgical programs, which will allow us to finally close South Street Hospital. Today's government announcement will enhance the vision of London Health Sciences Centre as a leading teaching hospital in Canada." "The ReNew Ontario plan will make it possible for many hospitals to undertake much-needed capital improvements to facilities that, across Ontario, average 43 years old," said Hilary Short, president and CEO of the Ontario Hospital Association (OHA). "Innovative financing models allow hospitals to harness private sector capital and expertise, and move forward quickly with projects that will benefit patients and their communities." Under the province's ReNew Ontario infrastructure investment plan, the McGuinty government and its partners are investing $5 billion over the next five years to improve Ontario's health care facilities. Disponible en français www.pir.gov.on.ca Backgrounder ------------------------------------------------------------------------- RESTORATION OF LONDON HEALTH SCIENCES CENTRE London Health Sciences Centre is among the leaders in Ontario in acute health care delivery. The provincial government has now announced new investment that will accelerate the remainder of the capital redevelopment project to consolidate the facilities and streamline patient care in the London region. The Ontario government is supporting the completion of the London Health Sciences Centre (LHSC) projects at the Victoria and University Hospitals, part of a multi-year redevelopment project to permit the consolidation of acute in-patient services at LHSC. Alternative Financing and Procurement The project has been approved as an alternative financing and procurement project. This means the construction work will be financed and carried out by the private sector, which will assume the financial risks of ensuring that the project is finished on time and on budget. The completed facility will be publicly owned, controlled and accountable. Framework for Planning, Financing and Procuring Infrastructure The government has made it clear that public hospitals, and also schools and water and sewage treatment facilities, will remain under public ownership and control. All aspects of the London projects will be consistent with the principles of the government's Building a Better Tomorrow framework announced by Public Infrastructure Renewal Minister David Caplan in July 2004. The guiding principles of the framework are: 1. The public interest is paramount. 2. Value for money must be demonstrable. 3. Appropriate public control/ownership must be preserved. 4. Accountability must be maintained. 5. All processes must be fair, transparent and efficient. ReNew Ontario The London projects are part of ReNew Ontario - the government's five- year infrastructure investment strategy. Under this strategy, the province and its partners will invest more than $30 billion over the next five years in Ontario's public infrastructure. ReNew Ontario commits the government and its partners to investing $5 billion in health care by 2010. Over the next five years, the goal is to modernize Ontario's health infrastructure by updating equipment and expanding capacity to meet the needs of the province's growing and aging population. The long-term infrastructure investment plan is designed to support the government's goal of achieving better health for Ontarians. Contact: Shannon McFadyen Communications Branch 416-325-1316 Disponible en français www.pir.gov.on.caFor further information: Contacts: Wilson Lee, Minister's Office, (416) 325-8735; Shannon McFadyen, Communications Branch, (416) 325-1316