The Quebec government is considering the construction of at least two new general hospitals in the Greater Montreal region including one in the Vaudreuil-Soulanges region, Health Minister Yves Bolduc confirmed Thursday.
On Thursday, a report in newspaper La Presse said the government is studying the construction of a hospital near Vaudreuil and a second one in Rivière-des-Prairies in east-end Montreal.
The Vaudreuil-Soulanges hospital would be the second hospital serving the area west of Montreal. Currently, the lone option for residents is the Lakeshore General Hospital in Pointe-Claire.
Residents in Vaudreuil-Soulanges have been fighting for additional healthcare services for some time.
More than 25,000 people have signed a petition launched by local health officials calling for the construction of a hospital in the region.
"I hear all kinds of stories – people who have to travel so far to get their services and it's very hard for the families too," said Diane Boileau Seperich, director of the local Health and Social Services Centre. "It has to happen."
The Health Ministry is currently analyzing how it will respond to population growth in the region west of Montreal and in the Laurentians, Bolduc said responding to questions from reporters.
"We are going to need some infrastructure," Bolduc said. "With the process of … [planning] we’re going to take the good decision and it won’t be at the last minute."
Bolduc acknowledged there is also a need for additional healthcare infrastructure in east-end Montreal.
The government is looking at the issue over a five to10 year term, Bolduc said.
"When you want to build new infrastructure it always takes many years and that is why we’re going to do the planning now," he said.