Ford visits Barrie as Ontario announces funding for Georgian College nursing program

Less than two weeks since his last swing through Simcoe County, Premier Doug Ford is back. This time he's touring Royal Victoria Regional Health Centre and Georgian College in Barrie.

The premier's visit comes as Ontario announces $564,308 to help increase enrollment in nursing programs at Georgian College.

The province says the funding would support up to 62 new practical nursing students.

"This funding will create more opportunities to train students close to home and add more highly trained professionals to our health care system," said Barrie-Springwater-Oro-Medonte MPP Doug Downey.

The funding is part of a $35 million investment by the Ontario government to help increase enrollment in nursing programs at publicly-assisted colleges and universities across the province.

"Increasing enrollment in nursing education programs is progress in ensuring that Ontario's health care system has the highly qualified staff needed to provide world-class care for Ontarians and our loved ones," said Simcoe North MPP and Minister of Colleges and Universities Jill Dunlop.

During his tour of Georgian College, Ford met future practical nurses and took in a demonstration by nursing students.

"If it wasn't for colleges like Georgian College doing this, we'd be short on health resources," Ford said. "This is what we need to do right across the province. As the population grows, and the baby boomers grow, we're going to need health-care workers."

Ford wrapped up his visit in Barrie at the Holly Recreation Centre COVID-19 Immunization Clinic.