St. Mary’s General Hospital receives provincial funding for new Cardiac Catheterization Lab

By CityNews Kitchener Staff

St. Mary’s General Hospital is receiving provincial funding to bring a new Cardiac Catheterization Lab to the hospital.

Deputy Premier and Health Minister Sylvia Jones was in Kitchener Tuesday morning to make the announcement.

This will be the hospital’s third lab at the Regional Cardiac Care Centre.

Nearly 3,500 square feet of space will be renovated for the catheterization lab suite to allow the hospital to complete more cardiac procedures, reduce wait times for semi-urgent and elective procedures as well as timely access to essential service in the region.

“The lab will increase our capacity by about 50 per cent which will let us serve thousands more, so today we do serve thousands of patients and that would let us increase that significantly. The benefit is it will stop patients from having to go to our local centres around us,” said Mark Fam, President of St. Mary’s General Hospital.

“So we’re making progress, we’re not done, I think there’s more great work that is coming down the pipeline that communities, hospitals, community organizations will see coming forward” said Sylvia Jones, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health when asked about increasing wait times at local emergency room departments.

Jones said wait times now are lower than they were before the pandemic, citing investments made by the Ford government over the years.

“This is about expanding access and getting people off waiting lists because that is where we are going to impact people’s lives.”

This announcement comes as the hospital is expected to see an increase of people coming to the hospital for procedures in the next five years.

“We are making sure that we are strategic in where the longer wait times are, where the communities are most in need and I think the other part that is really important as we are here in St. Mary’s is an obligation, as part of that expansion, to make sure that the surgical and diagnostic centres have a connection with their local community hospital.”

This is part of the province’s plan to address health infrastructure across the province over the next 10 years.

“When you have a building that is celebrating 100 years often there are some challenges that come along with that. Also $8.1 million in operating funding that represent a 5.5 per cent increase, this was over 2022 and 2023 last year, and it’s great to know there is going to be another 4 per cent increase that were going to see this year,” said MPP Mike Harris.

St. Mary’s General Hospital will getting a one time capital grant for the new cardiac care centre from the provincial government.

Jones would not comment on the exact amount of funding being added, citing there was a bidding process in place that she did not want to interfere with. Jones did add that the funding has been set aside and is ready for the hospital to use to create the new Cardiac Catheterization Lab.

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