FREDERICTON (GNB) – An estimated $200 million will be invested in an expansion of the Dr. Everett Chalmers Regional Hospital in Fredericton.

“Your government understands access to good-quality health care is important to New Brunswickers,” said Premier Brian Gallant. “This investment will help the Dr. Everett Chalmers Regional Hospital provide even stronger health care to New Brunswickers and their loved ones.”

This year $4.4 million will go towards continuing design and engineering work, which began with a $2.5-million investment in the 2016-17 fiscal year. 

The project consists of a three-storey addition of about 14,860 square metres (160,000 square feet) and renovating about 9,300 square metres (100,000 square feet) on the first three floors of the building. Construction is to begin in 2018 and be completed by 2025.

“Advancements in health-care practices and enhanced standards of patient care have highlighted the need for major hospital upgrades,” said Grace Losier, board chair for Horizon Health Network. “These investments will enhance our ability to provide our patients with exceptional patient- and family-centred care into the future.”

The new addition will include a new surgical suite and recovery room, as well as separate units for day surgery, intensive care, ambulatory procedures, central sterile reprocessing, specimen collection and clinical records. A gynecology, maternal and newborn unit will also be part of the new addition.

Improving access to primary care and acute care is a pillar of the New Brunswick Family Plan. The plan aims to improve the lives of all residents by addressing the factors that have the greatest impact upon health and well-being. It focuses government action in seven priority areas: improving access to primary and acute care; promoting wellness; supporting people with mental health challenges; fostering healthy aging and support for seniors; advancing women’s equality; reducing poverty; and supporting people with disabilities. The New Brunswick Family Plan framework document is available online.