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Letter: Thibeault says report on Windsor PET scanner was 'politically motivated'

In open letter, MPP says Sudbury treated equally and Windsor was given no special treatment when it came to purchasing a new device
In open letter, MPP Glenn Thibeault disputes a report by that Windsor was given special treatment when it came to purchasing a new PET scanner for Windsor Regional Hospital. (File)

There’s been a lot of talk lately about the PET Scanner.

Years of hard work by the Sam Bruno PET Steering Committee, Health Sciences North, and the Northern Cancer Foundation have paid off: the PET Scanner has been purchased, and after very specific plans were drawn up by the Hospital, an RFP has gone out for the construction.

In two years as MPP, we’ve delivered a PET Scanner for Sudbury: the government committed $4.6 million in capital funding and $1.6 million/year in ongoing operations. The community raised roughly $4 million for community capital costs.

I know how important this is for our community, but also of course, for the Bruno family. That was one of the reasons that I worked so hard for this.

In this politically charged time, I understand why opposition try to find fault in good news stories. But really, we have seen this process move extremely quickly because we recognize the importance of the PET scanner for Sudbury.
Getting the facts right is paramount.

Ultimately, a state of the art permanent PET scanner was what our community asked for; and that is what we are getting. That is a fact.

I recognize families are affected while we wait for the doors to open. That’s why, like everyone, I want to see this completed now. Political gamesmanship only distracts from the hard work our community has done.

If everything goes as planned, we will be celebrating the opening before the end of 2018.

Another fact is that Windsor is getting Cancer Care Ontario to purchase a new scanner that is replacing the community’s decade-old scanner. In Windsor’s position, with an existing program and antiquated machinery, Cancer Care Ontario would do the same for Sudbury.

And, just like in Sudbury, Windsor’s Cancer Foundation had to fundraise a significant amount to cover its portion of the new scanner.

Every community is different. Every community has different needs. And every community comes together to address those needs.

I am not the MPP for Windsor – I am the MPP for Sudbury. And that’s why I spend my time delivering for Sudbury, rather than clarifying politically motivated rumours.

I know there are many other projects that deserve our community’s full attention – NEO Kids, ALC beds, long term care and mental-health supports for example. I look forward to celebrating the PET scanner’s completion and, delivering on what’s next.

Glenn Thibeault
MPP, Sudbury