By Lori Ledingham
For The Standard
Hospital officials and local dignitaries gave the Centre Grey community something it’s been waiting to see at Monday’s sign unveiling for the new hospital.
Chair of the Steering Committee for the new hospital, Dr. Hamilton Hall said at the event, “It’s a real thrill to be able to unveil this sign and give the Centre Grey community a peek at how the new hospital will look. It’s been a very long winter and an equally long planning process for the new hospital — this is an opportunity to show the general public some of the results of the work we’ve been doing.”
The sign was erected close to the new hospital building’s proposed main entrance just south of Grey Gables and unveiled under sunny skies Monday morning. It features an artist’s rendering of the new building based on the planning completed to date.
“This is clearly a very positive step in the progress of our new hospital,” said Hall. “This sign confirms to the community that we are going to have a new hospital. Everyone working on the plans knows that we couldn’t put up this sign if it wasn’t going to happen.”
“Secondly, the government is fully aware of the sign unveiling and by allowing it to go up, the government is indicating its support of our hospital .”
Dan Rose, chair of the Centre Grey Heath Services Foundation, noted at the unveiling, “We live in a great community. None of this would have happened without the generous support of the people of this area. They’re the ones that have made this all possible.”
Also attending was Grey Bruce Health Services CEO Pat Campbell, who said, “We’re very pleased with the progress that has been made in the planning and continue to work very closely with the Ministry of Health to meet all of their planning requirements. We anticipate having feedback from the government on our Functional Program in the near future. Approval of the Functional Program is a critical planning milestone on the way to securing the final approval to build.”
While the Functional Program is under review, the design team is continuing its work.
Dr. Hall explained, “The current focus of the design team is on ensuring that all of the clinical and patient support systems including computers, pagers, nurse call systems, telephones, and clinical monitoring equipment are fully integrated. There have been tremendous advances in the capability of all of these devices in recent years so every effort is being made to take full advantage of the benefits this equipment can bring to patient comfort and safety, as well as supporting staff and physicians in their work.
Planning also continues for a primary care building to be co-located with the new hospital.
“This adjacent building would be a home for our family doctors, and would undoubtedly attract new doctors to this area. It’s part of the planning for an integrated system of acute, primary and long-term care on one site in Markdale,” said Hall.
“This sign gives the community a stronger sense of the shape and appearance of the new hospital as work continues on the planning and approval process with the Ministry.”