Nova Scotia to spend $8M providing modular housing for health-care workers

John Lohr is Nova Scotia's minister of municipal affairs and housing. (Robert Short/CBC - image credit)
John Lohr is Nova Scotia's minister of municipal affairs and housing. (Robert Short/CBC - image credit)

Nova Scotia's government announced Tuesday it will spend $8 million to create modular housing for health-care workers.

John Lohr, minister of municipal affairs and housing, said the projects will provide transitional housing for health-care workers in the province until more permanent solutions are available.

Communities across the province find it challenging to recruit and retain staff due to limited housing and he hopes modular housing can fill that gap.

"We need them all over the province, and when they come into some of these communities, they just have a hard time finding places to live. We've heard that repeatedly," said Lohr.

Setting priorities

The Housing Trust of Nova Scotia will work with municipalities to identify land in the communities with the greatest shortage of housing for workers.

Lohr said the housing won't only be for health-care workers who come from outside the province.

The ministry said modular units will be delivered as soon as possible once the province selects a supplier. It is unclear how many modular units will be built.

Construction could begin by fall

"One of the reasons why we want modular units is we know that it just really cuts down the construction time, but even modular units take time," said Lohr.

He said municipal approvals, identifying land and selecting a supplier will take some time but he hopes to see construction begin by the end of this summer.

Recruiting more health professionals is one of six solutions in Action for Health, the province's strategic plan to improve health care.

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