Ontario Expanding Access to Cardiac Care in Kitchener

Published on January 08, 2020

Province Also Investing in Critical Hospital Upgrades and Repairs

December 18, 2019 3:06 P.M. Ministry of Health

KITCHENER — As part of the comprehensive plan to end hallway health care, Ontario is expanding access to cardiac care for patients in the Kitchener-Waterloo region by making increased investments in hospital infrastructure.

Today, Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health, was at St. Mary's General Hospital to announce that Ontario is investing a total of up to $7.4 million to redevelop the Heart Rhythm Program. Through this project, the hospital will add new cardiac services that treat abnormal heart rhythms to the existing cardiac program to reduce wait times.

"Our comprehensive plan to end hallway health care includes building additional capacity for specialized services in communities like Kitchener-Waterloo," said Elliott. "This project will enable the hospital to offer a full continuum of cardiac services and provide patients and families with better access to the quality care they expect and deserve closer to home."

In addition, Minister Elliott announced that Ontario is providing St. Mary's General Hospital with nearly $750,000 in additional funding to help support roof replacements and upgrades to generators. This is part of the government's investment of $175 million this year through the Health Infrastructure Renewal Fund to help hospitals across the province maintain their infrastructure and ensure a safe and comfortable environment for patients to receive care.

"Investments in hospital infrastructure will help ensure that patients in Kitchener-Waterloo and across Ontario can receive the care they need in a safe and comfortable setting," said Elliott. "Maintaining hospital infrastructure is one more example of how we are working towards ensuring that Ontarians have the health care services they can depend on while building the capacity we need to end hallway health care."

As the government continues to work toward bringing Ontario's world-class health care system into the 21st century, this funding will help hospitals to address urgent issues, including upgrades or replacements of roofs, windows, heating and air conditioning systems, fire alarms and backup generators.

"We are thrilled to bring these important services to St. Mary's General Hospital, one of Canada's top three centres for cardiac patient outcomes," said Dr. Thomas Stewart, CEO of St. Joseph's Health System and Niagara Health. "We are extremely grateful for the commitment by the Ontario government to support this important program that will reduce wait times and bring new cardiac services to the Waterloo region."

Quick Facts

  • Construction of the project is expected to begin in the spring of 2020 and will include a new electrophysiology lab, adding 3,500 square feet of patient recovery space and expanded cardiac diagnostic clinic space.
  • St. Mary’s Regional Cardiac Care Centre is one of Canada’s top three cardiac centres for patient outcomes.
  • Ontario is investing $175 million in repairs and upgrades to 131 hospitals this year through the Health Infrastructure Renewal Fund.
  • In addition, Ontario is investing $7.2 million to address ongoing urgent and/or emergent infrastructure renewal needs for community health service providers who met specific criteria on a priority basis, through the Community Infrastructure Renewal Fund.

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