(Strathroy, ON) – The Ministry of Health and Long Term Care has recently announced that both Strathroy Middlesex General Hospital (SMGH) and Four Counties Health Services (FCHS) would receive one-time funding as an Exceptional Circumstance Project (ECP) Grant for the 2017-18 funding year in addition to the one-time funding allocated through the Health Infrastructure Renewal Fund (HIRF). In total, SMGH will receive approximately $3.73M and FCHS $810,000 for the 2017-18 fiscal year.
Hospitals can use the Exceptional Circumstance Project Grant and the HIRF funds for projects that extend the useful life, or result in an improvement in the quality or functionality of a hospital facility, but that will not result in an increase in operating costs. These funds supplement a hospital’s existing capital renewal program and help address renewal needs (e.g., roofing systems, boilers, windows, HVAC, fire alarm upgrades, etc.) on a priority basis.
“MHA is very pleased with the funding that has been allocated for infrastructure improvements at both SMGH and FCHS,” says Todd Stepanuik, President & CEO. “With this additional funding, we will be able to move forward with replacement of equipment that is critical to the plant operations at both sites.”
The ECP Grant was introduced in 2016-17 and represents an additional infrastructure investment by the Ministry of $50M. In order to be considered for an ECP Grant, organizations must demonstrate why the project must be completed immediately, the project must meet the priorities of health and safety, code compliance or asset integrity-imminent breakdown and the LHIN can demonstrate why the project is a priority for the LHIN at the present time. HIRF grants were established to assist hospitals in their efforts to renew their existing facilities. The infusions of cash for building upgrades and repairs are investments in patient care. “HIRF funding is critical in terms of keeping the buildings at SMGH and FCHS,” stated A. Smith, MHA Chief Financial Officer.
MHA continuously monitors and plans for replacement of equipment that is at end-of-life. At the Strathroy site the funds for 2017/18 have been targeted for replacement of the current switchgear and back up generators. At the Four Counties site, the back up generators and switchgear replacement is also the priority.