Ontario Supporting New Cardiovascular Surgery Program in Thunder Bay

From left to right: Honourable Bill Mauro, MPP Thunder Bay-Atikokan, Honourable Dr. Eric Hoskins, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care, Dr. Rhonda Crocker Ellacott, Executive Vice President of Patient Services at Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre, and Laura Kokocinski, NW LHIN CEO.

1,000 Patients to Receive Treatment in New Facility Each Year

Ontario is increasing access to important health care services and reducing wait times for people in the North by investing in a comprehensive cardiovascular surgery facility at Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre.

Dr. Eric Hoskins, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care, was at Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre today to announce new construction and renovations at the hospital to house the new program.

Once fully operational, the program will provide care closer to home for approximately 1,000 patients in Northwestern Ontario each year, meaning fewer trips to Toronto, Ottawa, London and Hamilton for the cardiovascular procedures they need.

This project involves new construction and renovation of more than 20,000 square feet at the hospital, and will include:

• An ambulatory care and pre-admission clinic expansion
• A new vascular laboratory
• 14 new cardiovascular inpatient beds
• 5 new stepdown beds for transitional care
• 1 new surgical suite, equipped with advanced imaging technology and a recovery area.

Ontario is increasing access to care, reducing wait times and improving the patient experience through its Patients First: Action Plan for Health Care and OHIP+: Children and Youth Pharmacare – protecting health care today and into the future.

” Investing in the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre Cardiovascular Surgery Project is another example of our commitment to improving access to quality care for people in Northwestern Ontario. I look forward to continuing to work together with all of our regional health care partners to ensure the highest quality of care closer to home.”

– Dr. Eric Hoskins
Minister of Health and Long-Term Care

” Today’s announcement of the funding for the capital component of the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre’s Cardiovascular Surgery Project is exciting news for all of the citizens of Northwestern Ontario. This is another major step forward and builds upon the establishment of local angioplasty services by our government in 2009, and the recently announced vascular surgery program. The delivery of cardiac surgery in Thunder Bay will not only improve wait times, but will allow patients to stay close to their families and friends. There is also a major economic benefit that will result from having cardiovascular surgery available in Thunder Bay, including opportunities for expanding the region’s growing biomedical cluster of businesses.”

– Bill Mauro
Thunder Bay-Atikokan

” I am very proud of our government’s commitment and support of this comprehensive cardiovascular surgery program to Thunder Bay Regional Health Science Centre. It’s a plan that makes sense in many different ways, including adding to our health care potential, reducing wait times, increasing our health care capacity and ensuring more patients stay in Thunder Bay to receive the care they need. This program is an excellent fit with our government’s commitment to putting patients first.”

– Michael Gravelle
MPP Thunder Bay-Superior North

” Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre is committed to meeting the specialized acute care needs of the Northwestern Ontario residents. Access to comprehensive cardiovascular surgical care, closer to home, is essential in our region where the prevalence and incidence of cardiovascular conditions are well above the provincial averages. This will improve the breadth of specialized clinical services, the care outcomes, and quality of life for hundreds of patients annually. We are very grateful to the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care and to our partner, the University Health Network, for making this a reality.”

– Jean Bartkowiak
President and CEO, Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre; CEO, Thunder Bay Regional Health Research Institute

” Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences and University Health Network’s Peter Munk Cardiac Centre have made enormous progress on the development of one program on two sites. We are very pleased that this way of working together has been recognized by the Government of Ontario and Minister Hoskins, and that this investment in Thunder Bay’s facilities will help patients in Northwestern Ontario rapidly access the cardiac care they require closer to home.”

– Dr. Barry Rubin
Program Medical Director of the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre, University Health Network

  • Ontario is expanding the Northern Health Travel Grant Program by $10 million in 2017-18. The program helps people in northern Ontario cover their travel costs for services or procedures that are not available in their local communities.
  • Ontario’s health care budget in 2017-18 is $53.8 billion — a 3.8 per cent increase from the previous year.
  • The total planned investment in Ontario’s hospital infrastructure will be more than $20 billion over the next 10 years. About 34 hospital projects are now underway across the province.
  • Ontario is making the largest investment in hospitals, schools, public transit, roads and bridges in the province’s history – more than $190 billion in public infrastructure over 13 years, starting in 2014–15. To learn more about what’s happening in your community, go to Ontario.ca/BuildON.