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Ceremonial blessing on construction of new unit
Ceremonial blessing marks start of construction of new 20-bed acute mental health care unit
Posted on 07/02/2024
Minister Visits Deputy Premier and Minister of Health Sylvia Jones joined Minister of Colleges and Universities and Simcoe North MPP Jill Dunlop at Waypoint Centre for Mental Health Care today for a ceremonial blessing of a new 20-bed inpatient unit that will address the growing need for specialized mental health and addiction care throughout Simcoe Muskoka and the surrounding area.

The new acute mental health care unit will provide individuals with complex needs improved access to a team of highly trained health care professionals providing a range of services, including psychiatry, psychology, occupational and recreation therapy, and addiction counselling. This investment will also include the first psychiatric ICU beds in central Ontario for individuals with increased risk due to severe mental illness. These enhancements will have a significant impact on delivering safer care and relieving pressures on the emergency departments of the eight partner hospitals in our region. 

Approximately 50 community leaders and Waypoint staff gathered today at the hospital for a ceremonial blessing led by Traditional Healer Austin Mixemong.

The new unit will be located on the third floor of the Toanche Building, on Waypoint’s main campus, in a former clinical area. Renovations will be made to this currently vacant hospital space, reducing the time required for the project since no new construction is required.

M.J. Dixon Construction Ltd. will prepare the site for construction over the next few weeks, with renovations expected to begin in mid-July. The work is expected to take about one year to complete.


“Our government is continuing to make record investments to build new hospitals and health facilities, connecting more Ontarians to convenient care close to home, no matter where they live. This exciting milestone brings Waypoint one step closer to opening its new inpatient acute care unit, ensuring people and families in the Georgian Bay region have faster access to specialized mental health services and supports when and where they need it most, for years to come.” — Sylvia Jones, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health

“I am thrilled to join Minister Jones, and the dedicated team at Waypoint, to announce the start of renovations on the Toanche Building. This project marks a significant milestone for Waypoint and our community, enhancing health care facilities and improving the quality of care for our residents and the region. These renovations reflect our ongoing commitment to providing state-of-the-art services and a supportive environment for both patients and staff. We look forward to the positive impacts this will bring to Waypoint and the community at large." — Jill Dunlop, Minister of Colleges and Universities and MPP for Simcoe North

“We are delighted to be getting started on the renovations, given the positive impact these additional beds will have on the health and well-being of the people we serve. Waypoint is fortunate to have such strong partnerships, and we will continue to collaborate with the provincial government, along with our hospital and community partners, to advance mental health and addiction care in our local communities.” — Dr. Nadiya Sunderji, President and CEO, Waypoint Centre for Mental Health Care