The Jewish General Hospital (JGH) in Montreal will receive $200 million from the Quebec government for major renovation, Health Minister Gaétan Barrette confirmed during a visit to the institution on April 30.
The money will allow the fourth and final phase of work on the critical care building, known as Pavilion K, which opened in January 2016, to proceed, as well as the upgrade of the original building.
The construction of the $430-million Pavilion K increased the JGH’s total space by 40 per cent.
A key improvement will be the conversion of patient rooms in the old building that have three or four beds, into rooms with one or two. When completed, the proportion of private rooms will increase from 18 per cent to 70 per cent, while the overall number of beds will remain the same.
When Pavilion K first opened, all the rooms were private, but capacity issues have forced some patients to share a room.
The final phase encompasses some 40 distinct projects, such as enlarging the pharmacy department, as well as improving medical imaging and physiotherapy services.
While the government has made the commitment, when the funds will actually be disbursed is unclear. According to the press release, “a sum of $1 million is earmarked for the preparation of the file, which will be submitted for approval by the cabinet in 2019.”
A provincial election is set for Oct. 1.
“The JGH is a veritable institution and flagship in Montreal medicine,” said Treasury Board President Pierre Arcand. “The work on this new phase will permit the finalization of a vast modernization project of recent years, as well as offer users better quality, accessibility, security and privacy of care in very specialized areas of medicine.”
Dr. Lawrence Rosenberg, president and chief executive officer of CIUSSS West-Central Montreal, said the investment is crucial, since it addresses “increasingly urgent health-care needs, especially among the growing proportion of elderly in the population.
“With support and collaboration of our partners in government, in the community and among our donors, we hope to continue transforming the JGH to meet the challenges of the future, while honouring the values and traditions that have been intrinsic elements of our heritage for well over 80 years.”
The JGH itself has undertaken to contribute $25 million to the project.
The major work of the second and third phases was the construction of Pavilion K’s three foundational floors and the seven-storey tower above them. The first phase saw the construction of a new emergency department and underground parking.
In addition to critical care, the pavilion houses operating rooms, intensive care and coronary units, a birthing centre, neonatology and a day hospital.