Sarah Downey, President and CEO of MGH receives the ceremonial keys from EllisDon's Andrew Anderson.
MGH President and CEO Sarah Downey receives the ceremonial keys from EllisDon VP Andrew Anderson.

Michael Garron Hospital marks next milestone in hospital’s campus transformation, takes ownership of Ken and Marilyn Thomson Patient Care Centre

August 3, 2022 (Toronto, ON) – Michael Garron Hospital (MGH) is marking another major milestone in its $560-million hospital campus transformation.

On Friday, July 29, 2022, the hospital reached Tower Interim Completion, meaning ownership of the Ken and Marilyn Thomson Patient Care Centre, also known as the Thomson Centre, has officially transferred from builder EllisDon Infrastructure Healthcare to MGH.

This milestone comes just over four years after the building’s groundbreaking at Sammon and Coxwell Avenues.

“I’m thrilled that we are marking this milestone for the Thomson Centre, the centerpiece of the largest redevelopment project in our hospital’s history,” says Sarah Downey, President and CEO, MGH.

“Over the past four years, we have watched this space come together, knowing that it will forever change the care we provide to our community. I’d like to thank our staff, the East Toronto community and our funders and donors, especially Peter and Diana Thomson, for making this possible.”

Hospital teams undergo extensive training, prepare to deliver care in new hospital facility

MGH Redevelopment team cheers after Sarah Downey receives the key to the Thomson Centre

MGH will spend the next four to six months extensively preparing for the public opening of the Thomson Centre.

Preparations include testing technology systems in the new building and ensuring integration with the existing hospital campus; refining security plans; and running on-site simulations and training programs for staff and physicians to prepare to deliver safe, high-quality care in a new space with new equipment, workflows and technology.

For example, the clinical units, team stations and hallways in the Thomson Centre take up a larger footprint. Therefore, MGH healthcare teams will participate in simulations and day-in-the-life training exercises to create new workflows that offer patients, families and caregivers positive and intuitive care experiences during their hospital visits.

The Thomson Centre is expected to open to patients and the public this winter.

MGH is grateful to its funders and partners for helping to bring the hospital’s campus transformation to life. The $560-million project is funded by the Ministry of Health, MGH and donors to Michael Garron Hospital FoundationIt was constructed in partnership with the Ministry of Health, Infrastructure Ontario and EllisDon.

The Thomson Centre was funded in part by Peter and Diana Thomson, who donated $17.5 million toward the project through the Michael Garron Hospital Foundation.

“As we prepare to open the Thomson Centre, donors at every level are heeding our calls for support. This milestone is proof positive of the power of philanthropy as an ever-growing portion of the redevelopment is funded by supporters from every walk of life – people who recognize the need for state-of-the-art healthcare facilities in East Toronto,” says Mitze Mourinho, President of Michael Garron Hospital Foundation.

“Further investment is vital to sustaining the hospital and its bright future. We are so grateful to all our donors for continuing to rise to the challenge.”

Welcome to the Thomson Centre – new building features and healthcare services

Thomson Centre exterior

The eight-storey Thomson Centre and adjoining three-storey podium will enable the delivery of state-of-the-art, accessible, compassionate patient care, while replacing some of the oldest spaces in the hospital.

Modern, bright and thoughtfully designed, the Thomson Centre will comprise over 40% of the hospital’s total footprint and 55% of inpatient beds. It will also accommodate 80% of total outpatient visits.

The Thomson Centre will be home to a welcoming and spacious main lobby and registration area, new retail spaces, including the Moez & Marissa Kassam Food Court, four levels of underground parking and two outdoor terraces, including one open for patients, staff and visitors to enjoy.

Some of the features in the Thomson Centre include:

  • 80% single rooms: The Thomson Centre will replace 215 of the hospital’s existing patient beds; 80% of these will be single rooms, allowing patients to recover in privacy.
  • Chronic Disease Unit: The East Toronto community has a higher incidence of chronic disease than the Toronto city average. To address these unique healthcare needs, the second floor of the Thomson Centre will co-locate three of the hospital’s largest chronic illness outpatient programs into one purpose-built space that includes the Chest Centre, Kidney Centre and the Zeena & Farid Amarshi Family Cardiac Centre.
  • Carswell Family Centre for Medical Education: MGH’s new education facility will include classrooms, study spaces, and lecture halls to enhance the hospital’s ability to train tomorrow’s medical professionals.
  • Simulation Lab: MGH’s new state-of-the-art Simulation Lab is a healthcare simulation space designed to provide hands-on immersive learning experiences for staff and learners. The Simulation Lab includes a single simulation room with two patient bays equipped with mock medical gases headwall and an articulating boom arm. A separate control room is available for instruction and debriefing. This space will enable learners to practice the skills needed during real-life scenarios.
  • Surgery Inpatient Unit: MGH’s Surgery Inpatient Unit will move to level 6 of the Thomson Centre. The new unit is built using best practices in clinical design to provide a safe and supportive healing environment for patients receiving care. This space will have the capacity to accommodate 45 inpatients in a combination of both single (75%) and double (25%) occupancy patient rooms. The unit will also have patient support spaces including a rehabilitation room for occupational therapy and physiotherapy as well as a patient and family lounge.
  • New mental health facilities: The Thomson Centre will support MGH’s role as a mental healthcare hub for East Toronto. It will offer an exceptional therapeutic environment with purpose-built space for the 44-bed Adult Mental Health Inpatient Unit and the six-bed Slaight Family Child & Youth Mental Health Inpatient Unit for children and teens experiencing acute mental health crises. It will also include the Huband Moffat Family Terrace, a secure, open-air rooftop to support patient healing and recovery.
  • Renewal of existing spaces: The existing hospital campus will also undergo modernization during the redevelopment project. Upon completion of the Thomson Centre, demolition will begin on five of the hospital’s oldest wings to renew existing spaces and allow for enhancements including the construction of an outdoor community hub with spaces for play and cultural programming and a welcoming, accessible main entrance to the hospital.

“This milestone represents the tremendous effort by all involved, including MGH, our consultants, subtrades, Infrastructure Ontario and the entire EllisDon team,” says Jeff McKay, Vice President, Public-Private Partnerships, EllisDon. “This new tower is a great addition to the neighbourhood with state-of-the-art facilities providing the best of healthcare. Over the next two years we will continue with the balance of the project and once completed, MGH will be a beacon for the neighbourhood and a project everyone can be very proud of.”

“We are privileged to have the opportunity to deliver this project for the East Toronto community, which will enable the delivery of efficient, accessible, and high-quality patient care,” says Michael Lindsay, President and CEO, Infrastructure Ontario. “This project is a resonant example of the work we are undertaking across the province in the healthcare space to ensure the delivery of quality care for all Ontarians. As we celebrate this key milestone with our partners at Michael Garron Hospital, we look forward to continuing to deliver this vital infrastructure project.”

About Michael Garron Hospital
Nestled in the heart of East Toronto, MGH is a vibrant community teaching hospital serving more than 400,000 people in 22 distinct neighbourhoods. For 90 years, MGH has delivered high-quality, patient-centred healthcare services to families along the continuum of care, from welcoming a new life to facing end-of-life. MGH has continually renewed its commitment to community by adapting its programs and services to meet the evolving needs of the diverse population it serves. MGH is a leading full-service hospital with strong community and research partners, including the University of Toronto. Read more:    

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