Construction begins on Bluewater Health project



    TORONTO, Oct. 12 /CNW/ - Staff, doctors and volunteers from Bluewater
Health joined community members today at a groundbreaking ceremony to
celebrate the official start of construction for the expansion and
redevelopment of the new hospital.
    With the addition of 325,000 square feet of new space, Bluewater Health
will become a larger, more modern facility housing an expanded emergency
department, a consolidated maternal infant child program and space for
additional acute care beds.
    "Today's celebration is a result of a vision long shared by our community
to build a new, modern hospital," said John DeGroot, Acting Chair, Bluewater
Health Board. "Today, together with our community, we begin that exciting step
as we build an environment that will be rich in life, light, comfort and
celebration."
    "Bluewater Health has committed and talented staff and physicians
delivering quality patient care every day," said Sue Denomy, Acting President
/ CEO, Bluewater Health. "With the building of our new modern hospital, we are
creating a setting that will enhance and transform our patients' health care
experience."
    The building team led by EllisDon has begun to mobilize for construction
of the new facility which is expected to be completed in late 2011. Detailed
construction work will get underway on Monday, October 15.

    Bluewater Health's redevelopment project will provide:

    
    -   An emergency department significantly larger than the current
        emergency facilities.
    -   A Surgical Centre with eight new operating rooms and four new
        procedure rooms to replace existing surgical facilities.
    -   A consolidated maternal infant child program, which will, for the
        first time, offer labour, birthing and paediatric services on one
        floor.
    -   An 18 per cent increase in the number of hospital beds, resulting in
        a total bed capacity of up to 337 beds at the Norman Site.
    -   A bridge joining the new building with the Norman Street building.

    Infrastructure Ontario will work with the Ministry of Health and Long-Term
Care and Bluewater Health to expand and redevelop the hospital, which will
remain publicly owned, publicly controlled and publicly accountable. 
Infrastructure Ontario is a Crown corporation dedicated to managing some of
the province's larger and more complex infrastructure renewal projects -
ensuring they are built on time and on budget.
    This project is guided by principles outlined in the province's Building a
Better Tomorrow framework, which ensures public ownership of core assets such
as hospitals, schools, and water and wastewater facilities.

                                 Backgrounder

    The Bluewater Health project involves construction of a new seven-storey
building, of which five floors will be for medical use, and renovations to the
existing Norman Street and the Russell Street buildings.
    This project will involve renovations to approximately 130,000 square feet
of existing space and the addition of approximately 325,000 square feet of new
space, which will almost double the hospital's size.
    Bluewater Health, with hospital sites in Sarnia and Petrolia, has a total
of 320 beds. The hospital has 1,700 staff, 100 credentialed physicians and 800
volunteers who care for 319,000 patients annually. Bluewater Health is the
winner of the Ontario Hospital Association's "Green Health Care - Overall
Leadership Award - 2005".

    Bluewater Health's redevelopment project will provide:

    -   An emergency department significantly larger than the current
        emergency facilities.
    -   A Surgical Centre with eight new operating rooms and four new
        procedure rooms to replace existing surgical facilities.
    -   A consolidated maternal infant child program, which will, for the
        first time, offer labour, birthing and paediatric services on one
        floor.
    -   An 18 per cent increase in the number of hospital beds, resulting in
        a total bed capacity of up to 337 beds at the Norman Site.
    -   A bridge joining the new building with the Norman Street building.
    

    Construction will begin in October. The first phase of the project
involves construction of a new seven-storey tower, which will be complete in
2010. Renovations to the existing Norman and Russell Street sites will be
complete in 2011.

    Disponible en français





For further information:

For further information: Jessica Hooker, Infrastructure Ontario, (416)
327-5325; Toni Adey, Bluewater Health, (519) 464-4452


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