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Health Coalition Announces Massive Fight Back to Stop the Ford Government’s Plans to Privatize Ontario’s Public Hospitals

Posted: April 18, 2023

(April 17th, 2023)

By: Global News Wire


TORONTO, April 17, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — For the first time, Ontario’s government is pushing forward with plans to privatize the province’s public hospitals. In response, thousands of Ontarians have taken to the streets of their communities to organize a mass citizen-run referendum. The Ontario Health Coalition and its local chapters across the province are launching the referendum on Tuesday April 18 in media conferences and availabilities across Ontario.

On January 16, the Ford government announced it is moving forward with plans to “substantially,” in their own words, expand for-profit clinics and hospitals to take the surgeries and diagnostics out of our local public hospitals. Surgeries, MRIs and CTs are core public hospital services. In response to media questions, Premier Ford said that it is his government’s estimation that 50% of the surgeries done in our public hospitals are the “easy” sort– the profitable ones that for-profit clinics and hospitals want to take – and the kind that his government wants to privatize. The government has contracted the first three for-profit clinics (day hospitals) in Windsor, Waterloo and Ottawa, and is allowing for-profit corporations to run surgeries out of under-used public hospital operating rooms already.

The government introduced enabling legislation on the first day the Ontario Legislature re-opened in February and has used its majority to push through Bill 60 and vote down all amendments proposed by the Opposition parties. Thus, any public hearings as brief and without notice as they were, were pro forma, and had no impact on Ford’s plans. The legislation is expected to pass this week.

The Health Coalition has vowed an unprecedented fightback to match the unprecedented privatization of Ontario’s core public health care services.

The Ontario public has never had any say about this plan to cut these vital services from our local public hospitals and privatize them. Most of our communities have spent the last hundred years or more fundraising, donating and volunteering to build up their local hospitals and bring services closer to home.

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