MUSKOKA, ON- A vision for the future of two local hospitals is being put forward next month.

According to an update from the Capital Plan Development Task Force of Muskoka Algonquin Health Care (MAHC), the team held their final meeting on September 12th to evaluate five options for the hospitals in Huntsville and Bracebridge.

The options for the future of both sites included renovation and expansion, or completely new builds, along with a totally new site for the Bracebridge facility.

“The task force’s analysis included construction cost estimates from a cost consultant, public consultation and feedback on the options, in-depth study of the local share portion of the capital cost that the community is responsible for through the Ministry’s capital planning process, and objective and subjective evaluation of the options using approved design guiding principles and quantitative criteria,” read the announcement from the board.

“To assist the task force in completing its evaluation, a Local Share Working Group was formed to determine the financial contribution that could be required of our communities and identify opportunities and strategies to raise these funds.”

That group met several times in the spring and summer, and presented their findings to the task force at the meeting on the 12th.

“The task force understands from this work that the local share is relatively the same and not materially different for each option, and that the hospital foundations, District of Muskoka and area municipalities recognize the financial commitment required and philosophically support the need.”

After they looked at the options, they decided on bringing forward a new hospital build on current land for the Huntsville site, and a new hospital build on new land for the South Muskoka site.

A formal report on the recommendation should be coming to the MAHC board of directors at their meeting on October 10th.