Chairman of the Cornwall Regional Hospital oversight committee, Professor Archibald McDonald, says the most recent estimates for the completion of renovation work at the western-hospital, won’t be the final figure.

The independent oversight committee appointed by Health Minister Dr Christopher Tufton to oversee the ongoing restoration work at the problem-plagued Cornwall Regional Hospital in St. James, is now estimating repair work could cost up to $3.5-billion. That’s more than $1-billion higher than initial projections.

Initial projects done last year estimated the cost of the restoration work to be $2.2-billion.

Professor McDonald says it’s impossible to know the final figure until the work is closer to completion.

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He says issues were discovered during the restoration work that cost the estimates to increase by about 50-percent.

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Meanwhile Professor McDonald says it could cost up to $40-billion to build a new facility of a similar size the what is currently available. He says the hospital’s restoration is scheduled for completion by May next year.