Local hospital foundations are working together to raise $4.7-million for a new MRI scanner at the Owen Sound Hospital.
Grey Bruce Health Services (GBHS) CEO Lance Thurston says the current MRI at the hospital is now 15-years-old and among the most-dated across the province.
"If it's not the oldest, it's among the top-2 oldest MRIs in Ontario being used," Thurston explains. "Currently, we have over 11,000 people each year who use the MRI. It's one of the more fundamental diagnostic tools we use."
The Owen Sound Regional Hospital Foundation received a $10,000 from McDougall Energy this week to usher the campaign into the public eye, after Thurston says several hundred thousand dollars were raised in early fundraising efforts.
"It is an enormously generous contribution to the campaign and it really does help build considerable momentum," the GBHS CEO says. "We would not have a hospital if we did not have contributions from the community."
Thurston says the Ontario government does not provide funding for hospital to purchase or replace equipment.
"We rely on the community to provide the capital dollars to furnish the hospital and refurbish the equipment," he explains.
Thurston says the existing MRI will continue operating while work gets underway to install the new machine in March 2019.
He notes the MRI at the Owen Sound Hospital is utilized by patients all across Grey and Bruce counties.
All of the hospital foundations within Grey Bruce Health Services -- Owen Sound, Meaford, Centre Grey, Saugeen Memorial and Bruce Peninsula -- are collaborating on the $4.7-million campaign for a new MRI.