Philanthropist Jim Neill makes historic $5 million gift to Peterborough Regional Health Centre Foundation

Largest donation in foundation's history will support the future of cardiac care at Peterborough's regional hospital

Peterborough Regional Health Centre (PRHC) president and CEO Dr. Peter McLaughlin, along with representatives of the PRHC Foundation and the hospital, react to the announcement of a historic $5 million donation from philanthropist Jim Neill. (Photo: Jeremy Kelly / Impact Communications)
Peterborough Regional Health Centre (PRHC) president and CEO Dr. Peter McLaughlin, along with representatives of the PRHC Foundation and the hospital, react to the announcement of a historic $5 million donation from philanthropist Jim Neill. (Photo: Jeremy Kelly / Impact Communications)

Philanthropist Jim Neill is donating $5 million to the Peterborough Regional Health Centre (PRHC) Foundation to support the future of cardiac care at the regional hospital.

Lesley Heighway, PRHC Foundation president and CEO, made the announcement at a recent private donor event attended by a small number of hospital and PRHC Foundation representatives, noting that Neill’s gift is the largest donation in the foundation’s history.

“With his incredible $5 million donation, Jim is joining a long and proud tradition of philanthropists who know that it takes the collective generosity of many today to create the world-class patient care of tomorrow,” Heighway said.

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Neill said he was inspired to make the gift after moving back to the Peterborough area and realizing how important it is to have cardiac care services close to home.

“Where I used to live in Toronto, there were four hospitals within a 15-minute drive of my home — all of which offered lifesaving emergency cardiac care,” Neill said.

“As I understand it, it’s essential that we limit the time and distance our loved ones, friends, and neighbours need to travel to get to get the same standard of care. I want to be part of that process of providing very timely cardiac care close to home.”

Philanthropist Jim Neill speaks about what inspired him to make his historic $5 million donation to the Peterborough Regional Health Centre (PRHC) Foundation at a private donor event. (Photo: Jeremy Kelly / Impact Communications)
Philanthropist Jim Neill speaks about what inspired him to make his historic $5 million donation to the Peterborough Regional Health Centre (PRHC) Foundation at a private donor event. (Photo: Jeremy Kelly / Impact Communications)

Dr. Warren Ball, interventional cardiologist and head of the cardiology division at PRHC, noted Neill’s donation will have a “transformational impact” on patient care at the hospital.

“Jim’s generosity will help us keep our hearts here today by investing in significantly improved technology,” Dr. Ball said. “When you add state-of-the-art technology to our exceptional patient care, it will also empower us to pursue our vision for tomorrow.”

“While the planning for this exciting opportunity is in the early stages, I can tell you we’re committed to ensuring our patients have access to the finest, most comprehensive cardiac care available, right here at PRHC.”

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While recognizing Neill’s exceptional generosity, PRHC president and CEO Dr. Peter McLaughlin said the hospital’s cardiac program and exceptional standard of care would not be possible without the past support of donors.

“Over the years, many individuals, foundations and corporations have stepped forward to embrace our vision as their own, through donations of all sizes,” McLaughlin said.

“Now here we are once again, about to embark on a new era of cardiac care, thanks to the support of another visionary leader. That’s the power of philanthropy and we’re grateful for Jim’s and all our donors’ support.”

VIDEO: Historic $5 million donation to PRHC Cardiac Care

For his part, Neill said he’s honoured to be part of the tradition of philanthropy that has supported PRHC from the beginning.

“The new lifesaving treatments coming to PRHC in the near future will once again change the face of cardiac care in our region,” said Neill.

“I’m excited to be part of that and I hope that my donation will encourage and inspire others, as the donors who have come before have inspired me.”