NSP Announces $22 million in Upgrades for Hospitals

November 10, 2011

The province is investing $22 million to upgrade aging health-care facilities to provide better care for patients and an improved environment for health-care professionals.

Health and Wellness Minister Maureen MacDonald made the announcement today, Nov. 10, as part of the province’s new capital plan to make life better for families.

“Government is investing in much needed infrastructure upgrades that will make hospitals safer and more sustainable over the long term, which helps us deliver better health care to patients,” said Ms. MacDonald.

The majority of funds will go to building maintenance and to ensure facilities meet fire and safety codes. The investment supports the province’s Better Care Sooner Plan, which helps district health authorities with issues related to quality and safety.

This is the second time in the province’s history that government is releasing some details of the capital plan before the spring budget. This sends a clear signal of what the province intends to do in the year ahead and gives private companies greater opportunity to prepare for upcoming projects, resulting in efficiencies and cost savings for the province.

Most of the investment, $13.5 million, will be used for building maintenance, upgrading energy efficiency, ensuring environmental sustainability and improving occupational health and safety. The funding will help replace fuel tanks, repair leaks, address hazards in common work areas, improve boiler plant efficiency, replace lights and motors and control electrical costs.

The remaining funds will be spent as follows:

— $4 million to replace and upgrade hospital elevators.

— $3 million to address fire and life safety recommendations identified by the auditor general earlier this year.

— $1.5 million to upgrade and replace dust collection systems to improve air quality and safety.

“Investments in our hospitals will go a long way to helping us improve the quality and level of health care we provide in the region and across the province,” said John Malcom, CEO of Cape Breton District Health Authority. “Hospitals need elevators that work, they need roofs that don’t leak and they need up-to-date sprinkler systems. This funding will mean a better experience, for patients, families and employees.”

The province’s new capital plan will invest millions of dollars to make life better for families. It will create good jobs, grow the economy, and provide better healthcare for all Nova Scotians. The capital plan invests in projects that are most important to Nova Scotians like emergency rooms, schools, roads and hospital equipment. The province will announce further details on individual investments in upcoming months.