Nov. 4, 2009
SAINT JOHN (CNB) - Work has begun on more than $2 million in construction projects associated with the development of new health-care training facilities in Saint John. Premier Graham made the announcement today.
The contracts that have been awarded include:
"The infrastructure projects we have planned for the development of health-care training facilities in Saint John represent an investment of more than $19 million," said Graham. "We have recruited 144 new physicians to our province since October 2006, and these new facilities will provide New Brunswickers with the important opportunity to receive their training here, at home, increasing the likelihood that they will stay here and assist us in building a healthy and self-sufficient New Brunswick."
Clinical teaching space and laboratories at the Saint John Regional Hospital represent a total investment by the provincial government of $3.1 million.
The NBCC Saint John Allied Health Building represents an investment by the provincial government of $16 million. The facility will be the site of programs in practical nursing, medical laboratory technology and training for personal services workers.
"Dalhousie Medicine New Brunswick is a success story of what can be accomplished when we all pull together with a common vision," said Tom Marrie, dean of the Dalhousie Medical School. "A medical education program will stimulate growth in medical research and is a major factor in attracting top physicians and improving health and the quality of care in this province."
The provincial government will also lease 2,520 sq. metres (28,000 sq. feet) in the refurbished Saint John College building at UNBSJ, where the Dalhousie Medicine New Brunswick program will be based. The lease cost will be $1.1 million per year.
"The investment that the provincial government is making on our campus in Saint John has the potential to create some really interesting opportunities in education, research and healthcare," said Eddy Campbell, president of the UNB. "We are pleased to be the host site for these two programs and look forward to developing a new health agenda with our partners."
Supply and Services Minister Ed Doherty spoke about the economic benefits of the projects.
"The $18 million total capital investment associated with these health-care training programs will generate the equivalent of more than 150 jobs over the construction period and provide considerable stimulus to our local economy."
Health Minister Mary Schryer said the new investments will further support ongoing efforts to recruit health-care professionals.
"Our government is recruiting record numbers of health professionals to ensure New Brunswickers receive the right care at the right time," said Schryer. "The new medical school and investments in capital infrastructure for medical training will further assist our recruitment and retention efforts."
To meet the current and future demand for health-care professionals, the Department of Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour and the Department of Health are working together to offer training opportunities in key health sectors.
"I am pleased that our government is contributing to the growth of the health-care professionals as detailed in our Be inspired. Be ready. Be better. The action plan to transform post-secondary education in New Brunswick," said Post-Secondary Education Training and Labour Minister Donald Arseneault. "The partnership between Dalhousie Medical School, University of New Brunswick, Saint John campus, and the New Brunswick Community College, Saint John campus, is an excellent example of how working together can have tremendous benefits for the people of New Brunswick as we move toward self-sufficiency."
MEDIA CONTACTS: Sonya Gilks, communications, Department of Health, 506-444-3506; Lori-Jean Johnson, communications, Department of Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour, 506-476-0542; Chrystiane Mallaley, communications, Department of Supply and Services, 506-457-7903.