Northern Peninsula medical centre long overdue, MHA says

The MHA on the Northern Peninsula says a hospital being built in his district is over budget and delayed.

Christopher Mitchelmore says health centre ought to have been finished last year

Christopher Mitchelmore says government hasn't been communicating enough with people in his district about when a new medical facility for the Strait of Belle Isle will be ready. (CBC)

The MHA on the Northern Peninsula says a hospital being built in his district is over budget and behind schedule.

Independent MHA Christopher Mitchelmore said a new medical centre promised for the Strait of Belle Isle, serving nearly two dozen communities on the Northern Peninsula, should be open by now. The centre will be based in Flower's Cove. 

"The hospital was supposed to originally open in 2012, so it's been about a year late," Mitchelmore said. "The building has been erected but it's been very vacant."

Mitchelmore said the cost of the new facility has also grown from previous budget of $7.25 million.

"In the economic review, when it looks at major capital projects, it put the price tag at $8.4 million," he said.

And it turns out the cost is even higher than that to date. In an email, the provincial government said the cost is actually somewhere around $9 million.

Mitchelmore said the people living in the area are still unclear when the facility will be available to them.

"They have a lot of questions. There hasn't been good communication by the provincial government, by Labrador-Grenfell Health, letting people know why the delay in the opening of the Strait of Belle Island Health Centre," he said.

An email from the provincial government also states that there is no set date for opening the facility, and that the delay is caused by problems with some of the construction work completed on the building.

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