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Plans to renovate Urgent Care Centre in Port Colborne move forward

Posted Aug 5th, 2010

Niagara, ON.: Revised plans to relocate the Urgent Care Centre at the Port Colborne Site into larger renovated space on the main floor of the building are moving forward with the latest approval from the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care for the redevelopment project.

The new Urgent Care Centre will benefit patient care in many ways, including improved privacy for patients with eight private treatment rooms and enhanced infection prevention and control capabilities. All spaces will be fully wheelchair accessible. There will be a new dedicated entrance with a wheelchair ramp and 27 new parking spaces near the entrance.

“With the functional program approved by the Ministry, the next stage in the approval process is to submit detailed costing and drawings for the Urgent Care Centre,” says President and CEO Debbie Sevenpifer. “The Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care has been very helpful in helping us plan for this new space. They made a detailed visit in the spring and offered several suggestions to create a larger, better space for patients and staff. These recent improvements include all private treatment rooms and additional space for patient registration and triage.”

Under the revised plan, the size of the new Urgent Care Centre is 5,678 square feet, 1,500 square feet more than the current space, providing nurses, medical staff and students with more spacious and accessible work space in which to provide care to patients.

Port Colborne Site nursing staff, allied health professionals, physicians and support staff were actively involved in developing the functional program for the new Urgent Care Centre. A functional program identifies what a hospital department is currently doing and what that department intends to do in the future. The plan includes a review of the patient population served as well as calculations of floor space required to carry out the service.

While this latest approval by the Ministry is a significant milestone and signals its commitment to the revised project scope, there are a number of further submissions and approvals required from the Ministry in the next few months. These key milestones include detailed drawings, tender and award of the contract. “We will be working very diligently in partnership with the Ministry to obtain approvals of the remaining milestones,” says Debbie.

“I know that this is welcome news to the communities of south Niagara and to the staff and physicians who are working in less than ideal conditions to provide quality care to their patients,” Debbie adds. “We anticipate that construction could start at the end of April 2011, with completion targeted for December 2011. The actual dates will be contingent upon the receipt of approvals and the successful contractor’s bid schedule.”

The project requires a local contribution estimated at $400,000 through fundraising by a commitment of the It’s Our Time campaign. The final local share will be known only when the final bids are received and actual construction costs known. To date, lead gifts from the Marsh family and Fraser Marine & Industrial, a Division of Algoma Central Corporation, total $305,000.

“We truly appreciate the support and leadership we have received from the Marsh family and from Fraser Marine & Industrial,” says Rob Neill, Chair of the South Niagara Cabinet for the It’s Our Time campaign. “As we enter this new phase in the redevelopment process of the Urgent Care Centre, we are confident that we will reach our community fundraising goal and help to make this project happen.”

For more information, media may contact:
Caroline Bourque Wiley
Public Affairs Consultant
905-378-4647, ext. 43113

Niagara Health System