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New Shriners hospital on track in Montreal

MONTREAL – Shriners Hospitals for Children leadership, along with key partners, assembled to give a progress report on the construction plans for a new hospital facility in Montreal. During the press conference held at the current Montreal hospital, Douglas Maxwell, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Shriners Hospitals for Children confirmed the construction of a new hospital on the Glen Campus adjacent to the Montreal Children’s Hospital (MCH) of the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC).

Preliminary renderings of the new Hospital were revealed to the media and assembled supporters of the Montreal institution in the presence of Health Minister Yves Bolduc, Normand Rinfret, Associate Director General of the MUHC and Richard Deschamps, Member of the Executive Committee, Responsible for Economic Development, Infrastructure and Roads – City of Montreal.

Following his report to Shriners during the 136th Imperial Session held in Toronto earlier this month, Douglas Maxwell, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Shriners Hospitals for Children, announced that Shriners Hospitals for Children will address three hospital structures this year: Los Angeles, St. Louis and Montreal.

Mr. Maxwell further explained that in the past few months, since the MUHC announced their choice of consortia and the beginning of construction, the planning process and collaborative effort between Shriners Hospitals for Children and the MUHC had moved rapidly. “The Canadian hospital has been given the green light to go ahead with planning, fundraising and construction,” stated Mr. Maxwell.

Robert Drummond, M.D., Chairman of the Board of Governors at Shriners Hospitals for Children-Canada, announced that “the new hospital will have 22 single patient rooms, four operating rooms, as well as 25,000 square feet dedicated to research.”

The new space will allow the hospital to continue to improve care for patients and their parents by providing a new environment that will enhance family focused care. Close proximity to the MCH with whom there is and always has been extensive collaboration will facilitate shared services.

Increased space will allow for state-of-the-art rehabilitation facilities which will include a gait laboratory. “We foresee that this new location will allow us to continue to recruit and retain some of the best pediatric orthopaedic surgeons, researchers and allied healthcare professionals so that we may continue to offer the best possible care to children from Quebec, Canada and around the world.”

“This announcement is not only about a new hospital but also the enrichment of exceptional pediatric orthopaedic care and research, and the strengthening of our longstanding ties with this fine institution’s professionals and patients,” noted Arthur T. Porter, MUHC Director General and CEO. “For me, personally, as a Mason for 35 years and a Shriner for over 20 – most recently as a proud member of Karnak in Montreal – ”this milestone embodies the spirit of fraternity upon which freemasonry was developed more than three hundred years ago.”

“We have known for some time that a new hospital was needed and we have focused our efforts on making this become a reality for our patients,” said former Chairman of the Board at Shriners Hospitals for Children-Canada, Gary Morrison. He went on to explain that “even with the expansion of the hospital in the mid 1980s, services have simply outgrown the current facilities. Our outpatient and day surgery areas simply no longer adequately meet the demand and our research unit has also outgrown its space.”

With certain patient populations who require extensive physiotherapy and occupational therapy on the rise (such as those with cerebral palsy and sports injuries) as well as new areas of expertise and research being developed, the hospital needs to expand. Mr. Morrison concluded, “thanks to our dedicated and expert staff we are able to offer the best care to our current patients. However, a growing demand for our specialized care and services and changing patient needs make this move more than necessary.”

“Our government fought hard, led by our Premier, to ensure that the hospital stayed at home, here in Quebec, when other proposals were made. Our government has met its commitments to Shriners Hospitals for Children-Canada by offering the land to build the new hospital. The construction project of the Shriners Hospital is part of the investments we have made to upgrade our infrastructure in the healthcare system, to provide the best care to Quebecers, and doing so in a quality environment”, concluded Health and Social Services Minister, Dr. Yves Bolduc.”

“The presence of a Shriners Hospitals for Children in our city has always been a great source of pride. This is not just another hospital. It is a great ambassador for Montreal and for Quebec. The development of the new Shriners Hospital confirms the leadership of our city in the areas of health and biomedical science. We are pleased to see this project move forward due to the collective effort of all partners,” declared Richard Deschamps, Member of the Executive Committee, and Responsible for Economic Development, Infrastructure and Roads of the City of Montreal.

About Shriners Hospitals for Children – Canada
Shriners Hospitals for Children is an international healthcare system dedicated to improving the lives of children by providing pediatric specialty care, innovative research and outstanding teaching programs. Every year, the 22 hospitals provide care for thousands of children up to the age of 18 with orthopaedic conditions, burns, spinal cord injuries, and cleft lip and palate, in a family-centered environment, without financial obligation to patients or their family. Shriners Hospitals for Children relies on the generosity of donors to deliver this mission every day. Located in Montreal, Shriners Hospitals for Children – Canada is a bilingual, short term, acute care centre providing elective pediatric orthopaedic healthcare. The role of the hospital is to promote health and to provide treatment and rehabilitation to children with orthopaedic and neuromuscular problems. The hospital is committed to excellence and innovation in clinical practice, research and education and to providing a caring environment to families. The hospital is affiliated with McGill University and provides clinical experience and teaching for residents and allied professionals. The hospital is present in communities across Canada, thanks to Telemedicine, Outreach Clinics and since January 2009, a Satellite Clinic in Winnipeg. Shriners Hospitals for Children – Canada has been helping kids defy the odds since its opening on February 18, 1925. The Shriners Hospitals for Children – Canada is celebrating its 85th anniversary this year.

Posted July 29, 2010