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Municipality presents first installment to Back the Build of County’s new hospital

Pictured at Shire Hall presenting the $2.3 million installment of the $4.5 million pledge, back row from left, are: councillors Mike Harper, Phil St. Jean, John Hirsch and Stewart Bailey and front row, from left: councillor Bill Roberts, Mayor Steve Ferguson, Shannon Coull, executive director of the PECMH Foundation; Barbara McConnell, chairperson of the PECMH Foundation; Leo Finnegan, PECMHF board member; Nancy Parks, Back the Build campaign co-chair and Monica Alyea, PECMHF board member.

With COVID-19 cases at a record high in Prince Edward County, and today’s announcement of a provincial lockdown beginning Dec. 26, the need for a quality hospital with state-of-the art infection controls has never been more important.

Monday morning, the municipality showed its support to Back the Build of the County’s new hospital, presenting a $2.3 million installment of its $4.5 million pledge.

“It was eye-watering to sign a cheque for $2.3 million,” said Mayor Steve Ferguson. “But I was thrilled to do it,” he told a small group of volunteers and staff members representing the Prince Edward County Memorial Hospital Foundation and members of council.

“This really is incredible,” Ferguson said. “The County of Prince Edward for many years has demonstrated unwavering support for the need for a new hospital that will benefit all our residents by ensuring the highly-qualified doctors and other medical professionals can continue to deliver quality health care in a modern, leading-edge facility.”

He also noted thanks to the current council members and significant efforts and leadership of former mayors Leo Finnegan and Robert Quaiff, and their respective councils.

In 2018, the municipality approved the PECMH Foundation’s ask of $4.5 million toward the campaign. The commitment marks the largest gift ever to be received by the PECMH Foundation.
“The support of the municipality is a major milestone for the Foundation as it continues to raise funds for the largest campaign in its 35-year history,” said Shannon Coull, PECMH Foundation executive director.

The installment from the municipality is included in the $14.7 million the foundation has raised toward its $16.5-million-dollar goal, noted Nancy Parks, the Back the Build campaign co-chair.

“The municipality of Prince Edward County has been on this journey with us to build a new hospital right from the very beginning. And without the support of the community we wouldn’t be here today. Not only is the funding so important, but the advocacy work in the political landscape has ensured our project has maintained momentum and continues to be top of mind for the province. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for many of us. I am honoured to part of this important project which will impact generations to come.”

“Our families, friends, and visitors to the County rely on having access to care at Prince Edward County Memorial Hospital. The new hospital will ensure this access continues, which is incredibly important to the future of our community,” added Coull.

Barbara McConnell, chairperson of the PECMH Foundation, noted the campaign is now at 89 per cent of its goal.

“We are absolutely amazed at being at this place at the end of 2020,” she said. “This says so much about our community and I am so proud it has risen to this challenge in such a short time. What this says to me, and others here who think, and talk about this almost every day, is that this exemplifies so much the philanthropic elements that are in this community. One of the things that this hospital is doing is it’s helping to get people involved in the act of giving.”

The new hospital, expected to be built by 2025, will offer the same current services, but in a space that meets today’s standards of care, with the latest technology. The new hospital plan includes 18 inpatient rooms that will be larger, and each equipped with its own private washroom.

Those interested in donating can do so by visiting Cheques can also be mailed to PECMH Foundation, 403 Main Street, Picton, ON K0K 2T0, and those with further inquiries, may direct them to 613-476-1008 ext. 4502.


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