Premier Doug Ford, deputy premier Christine Elliott, Hotel-Dieu Grace Healthcare president and CEO Janice Kaffer, and Windsor Regional Hospital president and CEO David Musyj were on the site of the future acute care centre to announce Phase 2 of the project.
A $9.8 million contribution toward Phase 2 was announced in the province's spring budget, but Monday the funding became official.
The new acute care hospital will be located on a 24-hectare site at County Road 42 and the 9th Concession.
The project is intended to replace the aging campuses of Windsor Regional Hospital but there has been criticism of the plan on the grounds that it would leave the downtown core without a hospital.
We're looking for people to push this project forward. — Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens
"What a terrific day for Windsor-Essex," said Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens, adding that Windsor Regional Hospital will have "open and transparent" consultations about its future.
"We know there needs to be a significant health-care presence at the Ouellette campus."
There has been criticism of the plan on the grounds that it would leave the downtown core without a hospital.
Elliott talked about what this facility brings.
"The new hospital will consolidate acute care services, and replace outdated infrastructure with modern facilities," she said.
"It will also ensure our health-care workers have tools they need to continue delivering high quality care."
As part of the planning for the new hospital, Elliott also said 68 mental health beds are "expected to be transferred" to Hotel-Dieu Grace Healthcare, which will go toward "a new centre of excellence" for mental health and addictions in the region.
What comes next?
Dilkens said Phase 2 will take about 18-24 months and the next step is "where the rubber hits the road," — it's when $2 billion will be needed to start building.
He said a lot of communities are looking for large investments in health care.
"We have to be smart," he said.
"We know that this is a top priority for the community and we need to make sure that, you know, as we're looking forward, and we're looking for people to push this project forward, that we have strong voices at the table who can do that."
An additional $7.8 million in operating funding for WRH and $1.57 million going to Hotel-Dieu Grace Healthcare were also announced.
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