McGuinty Government Supports Expansion Of University Of Ottawa Heart Institute



    $8.3 Million Capital Investment To Increase Capacity To Deliver Cardiac
    Care

    OTTAWA, Jan. 31 /CNW/ - The McGuinty government is investing $8.3 million
to support planning and redevelopment at the University of Ottawa Heart
Institute (UOHI) to further increase its capacity to deliver quality care for
patients, Health and Long-Term Care Minister George Smitherman announced
today.
    "Our government is working to help ensure Ottawa-area patients who need
cardiac services get the quality care they need closer to home," said
Smitherman. "This funding represents a very promising first step towards a
modern new facility that will provide greater access to care for local
residents."
    Today's announcement consists of a $4 million grant to go towards advance
planning of the redevelopment of the Cardiac Life Support Services project.
The project calls for the relocation and expansion of UOHI's Cardiac Life
Support Services from its current location in the basement of the Heart
Institute Building to a larger new facility on the Civic campus of The Ottawa
Hospital.
    The government is also providing an additional $4.3 million for
infrastructure improvements to maintain UOHI's current location until the
redevelopment is completed, bringing today's total investment to $8.3 million.
    In its redevelopment plans the Heart Institute is proposing to add a new
surgical suite, additional catheterization and electrophysiology laboratories
and 12 surgical intensive care beds, all of which will help reduce wait times
for cardiac patients.
    "The cardiac care, education and research that we provide are essential
to Ottawa-area residents and the citizens of Ontario," said University of
Ottawa Heart Institute, President and CEO Dr. Robert Roberts. "This funding
will help us lay the groundwork for the future expansion of the Heart
Institute to meet the demands we face."
    The UOHI is the provider of advanced cardiac services for the Champlain
Local Health Integration Network as well as national and international
communities. It offers four cardiac surgical suites, five laboratories, a
16-bed surgical intensive care unit and related support services.
    This is just the latest example of how the McGuinty government is on the
side of the residents of Ottawa when it comes to providing quality hospital
care. Other initiatives include:

    
        -  Increasing operating grant funding to hospitals to $12.9 billion
           in 2006/07, growing to $14 billion in 2008/09

        -  Reducing wait times for five key health care services (hip and
           knee joint replacement, cataract surgeries, MRI exams, cancer
           surgeries and cardiac procedures) with a recent investment of
           $222.5 million

        -  Providing a total of $41 million in capital funding to hospitals
           to repair and upgrade their facilities.
    

    Today's initiative is part of the McGuinty government's plan for
innovation in public health care, building a system that delivers on three
priorities - keeping Ontarians healthy, reducing wait times and providing
better access to doctors and nurses.

    This news release, along with other media materials, such as matte
stories and audio clips, on other subjects, are available on our website at:
http://www.health.gov.on.ca under the News Media section.

    For more information on achievements in health care, visit:
    www.resultsontario.gov.on.ca.

    Disponible en français.





For further information:

For further information: Media Contacts: David Spencer, Minister's
Office, (416) 327-4320; A.G. Klei, Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care,
(416) 314-6197; Members of the general public: 1-866-532-3161

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