Arnott: Minister must give green light to new Groves hospital

A new faci­lity for Groves Memorial Com­munity Hospital has out­stand­ing community support, and now it has the land.

Waterloo Wellington MPP Ted Arnott said in the Ontario legislature that it is now time for the Minister of Health to give his approval for that hospital

Arnott said, “I wish to in­form the house that Groves Memorial Community Hospi­tal, in the Township of Centre Wellington, is continuing to prepare to meet the health care needs of our residents in the 21st century.

“At the end of this month, in partnership with the County of Wellington, Groves will pur­chase 34 acres of land in Aboyne, between Elora and Fer­gus, for its planned, brand new hospital. I want to express my thanks to the members of the board and the foundation, the volunteer association, all the hospital staff, as well as the County of Wellington and the Township of Centre Wellington for their hard work and support on this important project.”

Arnott then stated, “We are ready to proceed with this new hospital. The community wants to see progress and wants to see this project proceed. But I ask once again, when will the Minister of Health be ready to proceed?

“As members know, I have raised the need for a new hospital many times in this house. As the Minister of Health knows, I have written countless letters about this is­sue, most recently in the fall. I say again that we need to be on the ministry’s five-year plan for new hospital construction. We urge the Minister of Health to do what needs to be done to make this happen.”

Arnott said he does not want David Caplan to use local health officials as a reason for delays.

“I hope he will not allow the Waterloo Wellington [Local Health Integration Network] to become a scape­goat for delays in the approval process for this much-needed hospital. The minister should not put the LHIN in that posi­tion. The minister must ac­know­ledge the need and the hard work of our community. We are ready to go, but we need the minister to say yes.”

Arnott’s move came just days after county council and Groves reached a formal agreement to purchase a plot of land and divide it up.

The county now has options for such things as a new police headquarters on its lands at Aboyne.