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Health and Community Services
July 23, 2010

Progress Continues on Health Infrastructure Projects

Work on the new St. John's long term care facility and the new hospital site in Corner Brook continues to move forward as the Honourable Jerome Kennedy, Minister of Health and Community Services, announced tenders for the construction of the remaining buildings for the long term care facility in St. John's and for site grading at the location of the new regional hospital in Corner Brook.

"The development of new provincial healthcare infrastructure is essential in meeting the immediate and future needs of people in this province," said Minister Kennedy. "The Williams Government has put into action an infrastructure strategy that is delivering new hospitals, long term care facilities and vital equipment and resources throughout Newfoundland and Labrador to keep pace with our changing demographics and healthcare demands."

A tender is being issued for the St. John's Long Term Care project for the construction of the second resident tower, the centre core block which will house food services, housekeeping, facilities maintenance, education and staff wellness services, and a utility building.

The site selection for the St. John's Long Term Care facility was first announced this past November. Once complete this facility will include two residential buildings and accommodate a total of 456 beds, space for recreation therapy, physiotherapy, occupational therapy and spirituality. A tender for the first residential building was issued in May and closed mid-June. The awarding of this tender is expected to happen in the near future.

The second tender is for site preparation for the planned regional hospital in Corner Brook.

A new hospital for Corner Brook was first announced as a Blue Book commitment in 2007 and the site selection was made this past September. A separate tender was issued previously, in mid-June, for the extension of water and sanitary services to the selected site, the widening and paving of the existing road that connects Grenfell Drive to the upper end of Wheeler's Road, the addition of a storm water system, a pedestrian sidewalk, and a paved bicycle path. This tender is expected to be awarded later this summer.

"We will take many significant steps to see these projects come to fruition," said Minister Kennedy. "With each new tender issued we get closer to an overall improved and upgraded provincial health infrastructure. This has been a priority for this government, and we are extremely pleased to move forward with these and other initiatives in Corner Brook, St. John's and also throughout the province."

The Williams Government's significant investments in long term care in Budget 2010: The Right Investments — For Our Children and Our Future include $27.3 million for the continued development of two new long term care facilities in St. John's and $4 million to start construction on a new 250-bed long term care facility in Carbonear. Approximately $1.7 million will be invested in a new protective care community residence in Bonavista, with specialized care and accommodations for individuals with mild to moderate dementia.

Budget 2010 includes $208.9 million for health infrastructure. The total figure includes $177.3 million for new facilities and equipment, with $11.8 million for the continued construction of the new hospital in Corner Brook.

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Media contacts:

Tansy Mundon
Director of Communications
Department of Health and Community Services
709-729-1377, 685-2646

2010 07 23                                                     10:50 a.m.

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