By: Mike Anderson
The medical building which housed the Georgina Nurse Practitioner-Led Clinic (GNPLC) until a fire destroyed the site in 2018, will not be rebuilt due to a lack of funds, according to a news release issued by the Georgina Community Health Care Council (GCHCC).
While GNPLC continues to operate in a temporary facility on 152 High Street in Sutton, it was hoped that a new permanent clinic could be constructed on the former site at 21071 Dalton Rd by the end of 2020.
However, that plan has been shelved, as the $500,000 required to begin construction has not materialized.
“Georgina Nurse Practitioners fulfill a vital role in the delivery of local health care, and we would like nothing more than to see them permanently settled in a well-equipped, modern facility for their staff and patients,” said Jim Beechey, Chair of the GCHCC, a non-profit volunteer organization that owns the Dalton Rd property.
“After close examination, the reality is that rebuilding the 60-year-old facility we lost on Dalton Road to modern standards is a substantial financial undertaking, and one the Georgina Community Health Care Council is unable to shoulder alone.”
According to the release, The GCHCC was unable to bridge the $500,000 gap between the fire insurance payout and the anticipated building costs of a new clinic. So, the GCHCC Board voted to not move forward with a rebuild at this time.
“We are saddened the Georgina Nurse Practitioner-Led Clinic will be unable to relocate to our previous site as it served as a well-known location for health care in this community for more than 50 years,” said Clinic Director Beth Cowper-Fung.
“Our registered patients will continue to receive team-based primary care at the GNPLC temporary location while permanent options are pursued.”
GNPLC, which has over 3,000 registered patients, received a $1.63 million grant from the Kathleen Wynne Liberal government in 2017.
However, according to Ms. Beth Cowper-Fung, these funds cannot be used to build a new building, instead, they are earmarked for the clinic’s interior.
While the GCHCC receives no funding from the province or the municipality, Mr. Beechley says he’s open to a “white knight” coming forward, however, at this time he is not actively soliciting one.
When contacted by The Post, Mayor Margaret Quirk offered this email response:
“I know this decision was given much thought by both the GCHCC and the Nurse Practitioner Clinic after examining all the options and issues. We will be reaching out to both organizations to meet see what the future plans are for both the Dalton Road property and a location for the Nurse Practitioner Clinic.”