Hospital expansion promises kept in full
Credit Valley Hospital’s new Phase III capital project, now under construction and slated for a 2017 completion, will “enable the men and women who hold the surgical instruments in their hand to perform more surgical procedures,” said Mississauga-Streetsville Member of Provincial Parliament Bob Delaney as he announced the fulfillment of a 2007 election pledge to obtain provincial government funding of the new state-of-the-art medical and surgical complex.
“Though we cannot now know their names, our surgeons are going to save many lives,” he said. “Families will not lose a parent. A child or a young adult, full of promise, will continue to grow, develop and contribute because of what we will build here at Credit Valley Hospital in just a few years.”
The announcement was possible because both Ontario and the Credit Valley Hospital Foundation met their respective challenges. In the past 25 years, the western Mississauga community, and the broader Mississauga business sector, have donated more than $120 million to the Credit Valley Hospital Foundation. For the Province to support a capital project, the community needs to raise funds for a portion of the total, and the residents served by the Credit Valley Hospital and the employers and businesses that benefit from it, have met their fund-raising goals every time.
The Phase III redevelopment at Credit Valley Hospital will meet critical needs at the hospital: an expanded critical care unit, nearly double in size with the addition of eight new beds; a new ambulatory surgery suite to provide adult and paediatric services, providing operating rooms, post-anaesthetic care and day surgery. The expansion will add five new operating rooms, and expanded recovery areas for both inpatient surgery and day surgery.
The critical care space will double from about 19,000 square feet to nearly 40,000 square feet. The final expansion area will be the busy CVH emergency department, which will expand from some 17,000 square feet to nearly 29,000 square feet. Clinical support areas, such as diagnostic imaging, will also expand.
“A generation ago, about four-fifths of surgery required an overnight stay. Today, those proportions are reversed, and about 80 percent of surgeries are done with such instruments as a laser or an arthroscope. Patients walk in for surgery, and go home the same day, hence the name ‘ambulatory surgery.’ This new facility will be designed and built specifically to serve that four-fifths of 21st-century surgical procedures in which the patient walks in and walks out the same day.
“In contrast to a decision that ‘trickled down,’ today’s announcement shows how a superb idea can ‘percolate up,’” Bob said of the input by Credit Valley Hospital’s surgeons, who worked with him during the past six years on the Phase III project. “The greatest reward of public service is to find excellent ideas in our western Mississauga communities, and to use the tools of government to help make them happen. This project is one of the best of those excellent ideas.”
“The surgeons explained the significance of day surgery to me a number of years ago, and our hospital and I were able to get the Ministry to agree. The Credit Valley surgeons were “the Genesis of the Phase III Project.”
“It makes sense that world-class practicing surgeons who tour the globe to see and discuss the best medical practices everywhere, would strive to implement the best of the best right here. And so you have,” Delaney said to the surgeons. Some surgeons attended the announcement, including Dr. Tom Short, who worked with Bob on the project. They were warmly applauded by the large crowd in the Credit Valley Hospital atrium.
“Our track record as a government, and this hospital’s track record as a project manager, says that we will deliver Phase III on schedule, and within budget,” Bob Delaney said. Several speakers mentioned Credit Valley Hospital’s continuing record of delivering large capital projects ahead of schedule and within budget, most recently the just-opened Phase II, another of Bob’s western Mississauga projects which he announced with the hospital almost to the day six years ago. Phase II, which added 140 new beds and doubled the hospital’s maternity capacity, went into service in May.
Compare and contrast on health care
In the black health care hole between 1995 and 2003, on the watch of the last, sad and sorry Conservative government, they closed 28 hospitals. They fired some 8,000 nurses. Our wait times for surgical procedures became Canada’s longest. Hospitals like Credit Valley had to cope with both growing populations and shrinking budgets. They did it before, and they will do it again.
Our government began the novel idea of actually measuring hospital wait times. And then they began to come down. Now, Ontarians have the shortest wait times in Canada for many surgical procedures. See Ontario wait times for yourself. Ontario’s wait times are on-line and updated contantly.
In a city like Mississauga where seniors are our fastest-growing population segment, we need to be ready for the greying of the baby boom generation. So why have Conservatives voted against every measure to ensure that the health care infrastructure our 45+ generation needs in the future, and our existing seniors need right now? Why would anybody trust a party that cut health care budgets when in office, and has a $14 billion hole in its platform, with the health care of seniors and mature adults today?