Health Minister Stan Cho visited Madoc today to break ground on a new long-term care site.
The building will have 128 beds and be on one level, reducing the expectations to use stairs or elevators for seniors.
“Beds are furniture,” said Cho. “What we are trying to build are homes.”
The groundbreaking was well attended by the members of the local council, Federal MP Shelby Kramp, Universal Care members and members of the Clare McFaul family, in particular his four children.
“We didn’t know the building was going to be named after our father,” said Gayle Stevenson, the eldest of the four. “When I got the phone call I just started to cry.”
Clare McFaul was described by Joseph Gulizia, President of Universal Care and McFaul’s grandson-in-law, as an upstanding member of the community.
“He was fondly known as Papa to some of us. Outside of his family he was recognized as a great friend, a Mason, a Shriner and a community builder,” he said. “Our aim with this home is to honour his values, character and unwavering commitment to excellence.”
The consistent note throughout the celebration was that building a centre like this was a long time coming, with years of work put into its planning and final groundbreaking.
“This home will enable our community of Madoc and surrounding area to receive proper care and services,” said Gulizia. “Following years of planning, discussions, co-ordinations and hard work we are here to start the construction of a home that will be filled with great people who will make this a home and a great location to live.”
When asked by the Quinteist on how rural citizens will be able to access such a facility financially, Minister Cho said the McFaul long-term care facility is intended to cater to the needs of local residents.
“We understand rural and northern communities often have separate challenges and we know cost and labour costs have escalated,” said Cho. “That’s why last year something called the Construction Funding Subsidy was created which allowed projects like this one to actually go through.
“The idea is for seniors to have the right care in the right place and the right place is to be in the place that you know and you love and where your family is, and that’s why we are going throughout these communities. It’s very much a home for the residents of this community.”
Cho also explained to Quinteist how healthcare workers – so many of whom are burned out from the pandemic – are being supported to come to a community like Madoc.
“It’s going to take an all hands-on approach because we know health and human resources are being challenged globally, but that’s something we’re doing: to attract and maintain with record investments and why I’m travelling the country to talk to those frontline healthcare workers.”