Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Alberta Government Budgets Cash for Hospitals, Including Calgary Cancer Centre

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Alberta Government Budgets Cash for Hospitals, Including Calgary Cancer Centre

Article excerpt

Alberta outlines hospital projects

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CALGARY - The Alberta government is moving ahead on a number of major health projects, including a new cancer centre for Calgary, despite unveiling an austerity budget last week.

The province announced in both Edmonton and Calgary on Monday that it will be budgeting $3.4 billion over the next five years for work on hospitals and health-care centres.

It says most of the money, $2.7 billion, is to be spent on ongoing and new construction projects. Maintenance funding is also to increase.

Included in the projects is a new cancer centre to be located at the South Calgary Health Campus.

The centre is to be the first phase of a two-site model for cancer care in Calgary. Future expansion is to occur at the Foothills Medical Centre.

Alberta Premier Jim Prentice said that there were a lot discussions about the cancer centre during budget deliberations.

"We know that we have to keep building capital. We know that we need a cancer facility here at the South Campus to meet the needs of southern Albertans," he said.

"This was always at the top of the priorities list. There's been a discussion on the best way to build it and where to build it ... this was clearly a facility that was needed."

Prentice said health care is vital to all Albertans, even in challenging fiscal times.

The 2015-16 budget tabled last week increased taxes and fees virtually across the board, while running the largest deficit in Alberta's history at $5 billion. …

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