The Prince Edward Memorial Hospital Foundation is hoping county council will boost
its contribution toward the building of a new hospital in Picton considerably.
Thursday, Executive Director of the Foundation, Penny Rolinski, asked council’s Committee of the Whole to up its support to $4.5 million.
Council had already pledged $1.25 million.
The Foundation’s goal is to raise a total of $16.5 million. Most of that money will go toward the community’s share of the capital cost to build the hospital with a lesser amount going toward new medical equipment and furnishings.
The provincial government would pay 90% of capital costs.
The Foundation already has a little over $$6 million pledged. If council kicked in $4.5 million the total would be over $10 million and Rolinski said that would cause the provincial government to believe the community was serious about a new hospital and push the project to a faster reality.
The Foundation says the $4.5 million pledge would work out to $52 a year per household over seven years.
Put another way, the money works out to 27% of the 16.5 million dollar goal, which would be considered an average donation from a municipality of Prince Edward County’s size.
Foundation Chair Monica Alyea said the last time a county council was asked for big money for a new hospital was in 1956.
“This is a legacy project for you as a council. It is this group around the horseshoe that can really get the ball rolling on this much-needed hospital,” Alyea said.
If finally approved, the new hospital would include all services now offered, and more including
modern day infection control facilities.
Executive Director Rolinski said the county’s senior population was growing rapidly and that the community’s viability hinged on having a modern well equipped facility.
“About $3 million is needed over the next five years to buy major pieces of medical equipment. Those are digital mammography, digital radiography, ultrasound and portable x-ray machines”.
A public fundraising campaign is coming but has yet to be announced.
The Committee of the Whole took no action on the Foundation’s request for a bigger donation but some commented positively toward it.
This year’s budget is set and a new council will be dealing with next year’s as there will be a municipal election in October.