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Jul 12, 2013: New integrated medical centre to open in early 2014

July 12, 2013   

WATERLOO — A new medical centre in Waterloo is quickly taking shape and doctors, specialists and other health services are expected to move in by January.

Already about 1,000 people have added their names to the waiting list for a doctor at the new centre on Ira Needles Boulevard. So far, 18 doctors are committed to the centre and it’s expected to be home to more than two dozen.

“Things are going really well in terms of the community response,” said Cynthia Voisin, who is with The Boardwalk development partner Voisin Developments.

Construction on the four-storey, 80,000-square-feet building started last summer and its exterior should be done within the next two months. Then work will begin on the custom-designed suites.

“It’s coming together,” Voisin said.

The first floor will have a laboratory, diagnostic imaging and pharmacy. The developers are also working with local hospitals to provide services in clinics on the main floor. A physiotherapist is also moving in.

Family doctors and specialists will be on the second, third and fourth floors.

“That really will address the problem with the doctor shortage,” said Voisin, adding that they’ve been working with the Greater Kitchener Waterloo Chamber of Commerce’s physician recruitment team.

Three new graduates from the local medical school are opening practices there. There are also doctors planning on a retirement and wanting to make the transition smoother for patients, who will then move to another doctor in the centre.

A specialists’ clinic will rent space as needed to allow more flexibility than a lease, such as one day a week.

“We want specialists to come to the building,” Voisin said.

They’re inviting doctors to an open house later this month to have a sneak peek at the new centre, which is designed to support a team-like atmosphere. Technology is integrated to facilitate communication and make routine tasks easier, such as emailing prescriptions to the on-site pharmacy or sending requisitions to the lab and getting results. A huge generator on the roof will ensure constant power.

For patients, there are many conveniences — lots of free parking, easy access on public transit, a canopy at the entrance to shelter those being dropped off, and many services all in one location.

Voisin says she gets calls every day about the new centre, mostly from people who are curious about the doctors who will be moving in.

Find out more or sign up on the doctor’s waiting list at www.the-boardwalk.ca/medical-centre.