In looking back on Ontario’s infrastructure landscape over the past 12 months, 2015 was a year abounding with construction activity, and much of it occurred in the healthcare sector.
Since its inception in 2005, Infrastructure Ontario (IO), the Crown agency responsible for delivering public infrastructure on behalf of the province through public-private partnerships, has completed 34 projects in the health care sector alone, while 12 health care projects are under construction. Together, these projects are worth more than $14.14 billion combined and are designed to modernize the province’s aging infrastructure and improve access to services.
Here’s a look at a few projects that reached major milestones in 2015.
Casey House (Toronto)
This past spring, construction began on a new facility for Casey House, a freestanding specialty hospital in Toronto for HIV/AIDS patients. Once complete, the 58,000-sq.-ft. treatment facility will enable Casey House to introduce a new model of care, while increasing its capacity to accommodate new programs and updated building design standards. The new facility will include 14 private in-patient beds, including two respite beds, space for a day health program and community programs, therapy rooms, office space for home-care program staff, and new spaces for administrative and support services. The project is expected to be completed in late 2016.
ErinoakKids Centre for Treatment and Development (Brampton, Mississauga and Oakville)
Earlier this year, ErinoakKids Centre for Treatment and Development celebrated the start of construction on three new children’s treatment centres — in Brampton, Oakville and Mississauga. The new centres will consolidate ErinoakKids’ existing patchwork of 11 facilities in Halton and Peel and enable the organization to continue its mission to help children and youth with physical, developmental and communication disabilities achieve optimal levels of independence and wellbeing. Among the services to be offered at the new facilities are autism, infant-hearing and blind low-vision services, physiotherapy and occupational therapy, speech and language services, assistive-devices resource services, medical, nursing and specialty medical services, respite services and family support services. The new centres are slated to open in 2017.
Humber River Hospital (northwest Toronto) In October, the new Humber River Hospital officially opened for patient care. Built using the design principles of “lean, green and digital,” the new facility uses the best possible technology to support the delivery of patient-centred care and is the first fully digital hospital in North America. With increased capacity from 549 to 656 inpatient beds, expanded emergency services, increased specialized outpatient services and updated infectious disease containment systems, the 1.8-million-square-foot hospital offers greater access to high-quality acute-care services for patients and families.
Milton District Hospital (Milton)
This past summer, Halton Healthcare celebrated the start of construction on a long-awaited expansion and renovation of its Milton District Hospital. A critically important hospital for the residents of this town, the Milton District Hospital will receive a new four-storey patient care building and significant renovations to the existing facility. Through this expansion, patients will benefit from an increase in the number of beds — from 63 to 129 — a new MRI machine and other expanded services, such as emergency, surgical, critical care, maternal newborn and diagnostic imaging. Ample single-patient rooms will improve infection prevention and control measures, while providing more privacy and a quieter healing environment for patients. The project is due for completion in spring 2017.
Oakville Trafalgar Memorial Hospital (Oakville) After four years of construction, Halton Healthcare’s new Oakville Trafalgar Memorial Hospital opened its doors to patients on December 13. As one of the largest hospital redevelopment projects in Ontario, the 1.6-million-sq.-ft. facility boasts capacity for 457 inpatient beds — 80 per cent of which come with private single-patient rooms. A sleek, sunlight-filled design complements the calm, quiet outdoor spaces. The new hospital provides increased capacity for a full range of acute care, obstetrical, surgical, emergency, mental health and ambulatory services, along with a cancer clinic, a new service for Oakville. The new facility replaces the old Oakville hospital, which is now closed.
Peel Memorial Centre for Integrated Health and Wellness (Brampton)
Brampton is one step closer to receiving a new health centre. This summer, William Osler Health System marked a significant milestone when it celebrated “topping off” on its Peel Memorial Centre for Integrated Health and Wellness. Topping off is when construction reaches the highest point on a building. Once complete, the Peel Memorial Centre will be a state-of-the-art ambulatory care facility, providing such services as urgent care, day surgery, women’s, children’s and adolescent health, seniors’ rehabilitation and wellness, day clinics for dialysis, preventive care for chronic conditions, diagnostics, laboratories, and mental health and addictions treatment and supports. Substantial completion of the project is expected in fall 2016.
Ron Joyce Children’s Health Centre (Hamilton)
November was a momentous month for Hamilton Health Sciences with the grand opening of its Ron Joyce Children’s Health Centre (formerly McMaster Children’s Health Centre) in Hamilton. Strategic use of light, space and texture helps promote a sense of wellness, engagement and belonging for patients. Fully accessible, the new centre includes an outdoor wheeling track, a therapeutic playground, outdoor terraces, and physiotherapy space. Services include an autism spectrum disorder program, a child and youth mental health program, developmental pediatrics and rehabilitation, and prosthetics and orthotics services (for children and adults). The new centre can accommodate up to 70,000 patient visits annually.