Frequently Asked Questions

 

When will the new hospital be built?

Moving through the next stages in planning could take between 7 and 10 years.

For more details, please refer to the Windsor-Essex Hospitals System timeline.

How did we get to this point?

April 21, 2012
Finance Minister Dwight Duncan created the Windsor Hospital’s Study Task Force to examine the possibility and need for a new regional acute care hospital to replace current facilities.

November 30, 2012
After months of community engagement, The Windsor Hospital’s Study Task Force released a final report recommending the province "proceed immediately in approving the planning and construction of a new single-site" for the Windsor Essex region.

January 2013
Finance Minister Dwight Duncan announced funding for hospitals to proceed with Phase 1 planning for a new state-of-the-art acute care facility. This included $2.5 million to prepare an initial 1A submission to the government; an additional $35 million would flow for further planning upon completion and Ministry approval of the 1A submission.

February 12, 2013
HDGH and WRH Boards of Directors announced a jointly agreed upon, a proposed new vision for Windsor/Essex. It included the realignment of services.

March 26, 2013
The Erie St. Clair LHIN approved the voluntary realignment of services between HDGH and WRH.

May 29, 2013
ESC LHIN established a Capital Planning Steering Committee to prepare the stage 1A submission to the government.

October 1, 2013
As part of the realignment, WRH assumed governance and operations of all acute services at the Met and Ouellette Campuses and for the new acute care hospital. HDGH assumed governance and operations of chronic care, regional rehabilitation, specialized mental health and addictions, and children's mental health at the Tayfour campus.

October 29, 2013
The Capital Planning Steering Committee shared its final report with the HDGH and WRH Boards of Directors. HDGH and WRH Boards of Directors voted unanimously to approve the Stage 1, Part A, Service Delivery Model.

November 26, 2013
The Erie St. Clair LHIN Board approved the Stage 1A report at a board meeting in Petrolia, Ontario.

February 28, 2014
The Honourable Teresa Piruzza, MPP, Windsor West and Minister of Children and Youth Services and the Minister responsible for Women's Issues announced approval for the Hospitals to complete Stage 1 planning for a new state-of-the-art acute care hospital.

May 30, 2014
The Steering Committee overseeing plans for a new acute care hospital announced the creation of the Site Selection Subcommittee - volunteer members From Windsor-Essex who will review proposals and recommend a location for the new hospital.

July 23, 2014
A Request for Proposals (RFP) was issued, inviting those with a property they think is suitable for the new hospital to submit proposals.

October 1, 2014
The Request for Proposals (RFP) closed. More than 20 parcels of land in the region were submitted for consideration.

July 16, 2015
The proposed Windsor-Essex Hospitals System was released. This includes plans and a location for the new hospital. This information was submitted to the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care as part of the Stage 1B proposal.

April 20, 2016
Essex County Council votes unanimously to approve a levy to cover the county's share of the new Windsor-Essex Hospitals System. In doing so, the county commits to approximately $91.5 million, or 46% of the local share.

April 25, 2016
Windsor City Council votes (9-1) to approve a levy to cover the city's share of the project. The city's share is $108.5 million or 54% of the $200 million local share.

August 2016
Windsor Regional Hospital submitted an application to the City of Windsor, requesting an amendment to the city's Official Plan and Zoning By-laws.

April 27, 2017
The Ontario Government and Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care gave the green light for the Windsor-Essex Hospitals System proposal to move forward in the planning process.

November 6, 2017
Infrastructure Ontario appointed to lead the procurement process for the construction of the new hospital. A Request for Qualifications (RFQ) is scheduled to be issued in 2021, subject to change.

December 1, 2017
Minister Eric Hoskins announces that planning for the new Windsor-Essex Hospitals System is moving forward.

August 14, 2018
Windsor City Council and the Planning Heritage and Economic Development Standing Committee voted to approve the hospital's zoning applications.

September 9, 2019
Infrastructure Ontario 2019 Market Update targets Windsor Regional Hospital New Acute Care Facility in a greater than a 5-year time frame.

Why do we need a new hospital?

  • Acute care services are currently divided between hospital campuses resulting in the fragmentation of services and ongoing challenges with patient transfers and patient flow across two sites.
  • The current facilities do not have adequate space to accommodate new and emerging health care technology and current standards of care.
  • The current hospitals are outdated, undersized and cannot accommodate current patient volumes or future service needs. The medical/surgical floors and emergency departments are less than half the size they should be using current standards which results in smaller patient rooms, cramped hallways and limited capacity for storage.
  • The current facilities make infection control challenging. Eighty percent of rooms in new Ontario hospitals must be designed for single patients to limit the spread of infections. Right now only 29% of rooms at WRH's Met Campus and 16% of the rooms at the Ouellette Campus are private.
  • The current facilities do not support the needs of the Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry, Windsor Campus, and our other partners in education.
  • With more modern facilities, we will be in an even better position to recruit and retain top physicians, front line staff and medical leaders, and in turn, advance the practices and services available to patients.
  • The Ouellette Campus is the site of the trauma centre, but air ambulances cannot land there, mostly due to flight patterns and because it was not designed to withstand the weight of a helicopter landing.
  • There are accessibility issues for patients, visitors and staff at the current locations due to "land locked" locations and inadequate space for parking.
  • Hundreds of millions of dollars will be required to redevelop the existing infrastructure. Building a single site acute care facility is less costly than renovating the existing facilities.
  • We are planning for the future. It will take 7-10 years to complete planning and construction. In the meantime, our current facilities will continue to become more and more antiquated compared to new hospital standards. We are planning for the future. Not only 7-10 years from now but 20, 30, 40 and 50 years from now.

WATCH: This video takes us inside both WRH hospital campuses for a close up look at some of the oldest hospital infrastructures in Ontario.


How many beds will the new hospital have?

The Windsor-Essex Hospitals System includes the same number of beds as the current system with room to expand based on the region's projected future needs. Sixty (60) acute mental health beds are moving to the Tayfour campus.

What is included in the plan to address the needs of patients in the downtown core?

The plan includes a number of services in the core including a satellite Emergency (Urgent Care), outpatient mental health, chronic pain management, and dialysis.

How will the Emergency needs of the region be met with only one hospital Emergency Department?

  • The plan calls for a new state-of-the-art Emergency Department (ED) at the new hospital site and an Urgent Care/Satellite ED in the city's core.
  • The hospital ED will be built and staffed for high volumes with at least the same number of physicians and other health care professionals that currently work in our two existing acute care hospitals combined. The new facility will be more efficient with separate emergency areas designed specifically to meet the needs of adult, geriatric and pediatric patients.
  • The Urgent Care/Satellite Emergency Centre run by Windsor Regional Hospital will be available to patients with less severe conditions. Forty percent of patients who currently use Windsor Regional Hospital emergency departments could be treated at this Centre. This model is currently being used in other parts of the province to ease pressure and reduce wait times in hospital emergency departments.
  • EMS transport planning will be part of future discussion.

WATCH: Dr. Paul Bradford, describes the benefits of the Satellite Emergency/Urgent Care model.


What is an Urgent Care Centre/Satellite Emergency Department?

A Satellite Emergency Centre is an alternate site for patients with less serious issues who do not require all the resources available in an emergency department. The new centre will be staffed by hospital emergency room staff and physicians and contain a CT scanner, a pharmacy and a lab.

This model of emergency care is used in other municipalities as a strategy to reduce wait times.

Approximately 90% of current WRH emergency room patients are not admitted to hospital and many of those patients would receive quicker treatment at a hospital-run Satellite ED.

How is an Urgent Care Centre/Satellite Emergency Department different from a hospital Emergency room?

These centres are not meant for patients with life-threatening issues and will not accept patients by ambulance. When it opens the centre will operate 18 hours-a-day (peak volume) with the ability to extend hours if necessary.

How is an Urgent Care Centre/Satellite Emergency Department different than a walk-in clinic?

The Satellite Emergency will be run by the Acute Care Hospital and staffed by hospital emergency physicians and emergency workers from the Acute Care Hospital.

Unlike a typical walk-in clinic, the UCC will include diagnostic imaging including a CT scanner, and laboratory services to allow physicians and other clinical staff to treat and diagnose more patient issues on-site.

Because it is part of the hospital system, patients can be admitted to the hospital from the UCC.

Is the new site accessible to all patients?

Accessibility was the number one criteria used to select the site. The new site is as accessible as or more accessible to patients, staff, physicians and physician offices than the current two campuses. The plan also includes services in downtown Windsor (urgent care, mental health, chronic pain management, dialysis, primary care, etc.) and additional services in Windsor West at the Tayfour Campus (dialysis, diagnostics, acute mental health) to improve accessibility throughout the entire system.

Although there are no bus services to the selected site right now, Transit Windsor will provide service to the new hospital when it opens.

Will Erie Shores Healthcare close as a result of this project?

No. Erie Shores Healthcare in Leamington is an integral part of hospital services in the region. The current plan assumes all current services continue in Leamington. The CEO from Erie Shores Healthcare has been part of the planning process with representation on the Steering Committee for the new Windsor-Essex Hospitals System.

Most rooms in the new hospital will be single-patient rooms. What happens if I do not have coverage for a private room?

Hospitals built today must have at least 80% private rooms to limit the spread of infection and increase patient privacy. Those who do not have coverage for a private room will receive a free room upgrade if there are no semi-private or ward rooms available.

Where will the new hospital be located?

A 60-acre property at the corner of County Rd. 42 and the 9th Concession is the recommended site for the new hospital.

How was the site for the new hospital selected?

The new hospital site was selected in 2015 using a detailed process that was open, honest and fair.
See more information on the Site Selection Process.

Who will pay for the new hospital?

The province covers 90% of new hospital builds. The City of Windsor and County of Essex have already committed to covering the 10% local share.
See more information on the Local Share page.

Why not take the money for this capital project and use it to address operational challenges?

  • Using one-time capital dollars for ongoing annual operating services is short-sighted. The location, provision, manner, and delivery of health care services are evolving and will continue to evolve. For our community, we will continue to fall behind this evolution by operating out of antiquated and insufficient facilities.
  • If we want to retain, enhance and be on the leading edge of healthcare delivery, we need the infrastructure to be at a level that allows us to achieve those goals.
  • Doing nothing is not an option – significant investments would be required to renovate and upgrade current facilities and leave us with the current inadequate footprint and landlocked properties.
  • This is not to say we will not continue to have operating challenges. However, by having a state-of-the-art facility to operate from our health care employees, we will have a better ability to address these challenges without physical infrastructure limiting our ability.

What will happen to the facilities at the existing acute care hospital sites?

  • Funding for the future use of both the Met and Ouellette campuses is included in the budget for this project. There will also be an alternative funded plan if necessary.
  • The proposal calls for Hotel Dieu Grace Hospital to return to the Ouellette Campus. There it will continue with its traditional role of serving the region’s most marginalized, disenfranchised and vulnerable populations. The site will be redeveloped to support outpatient mental health services. HDGH will also offer Chronic Disease Management.
  • In addition, the Steering Committee is currently examining additional uses for the Ouellette Campus including the Urgent Care/Satellite Emergency Centre and some ambulatory procedures.

What opportunities did members of the public have to participate in the project?

There have been 70+ town hall discussions and other opportunities for individuals to ask questions and give feedback. Learn more about Community Engagement.

How can I get involved in the future stages of the project?

Subscribe to our mailing list so we can keep you updated on any project related news including opportunities to get involved in the next planning stages.