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No PC ‘mandate’ for health revamp: Group

Posted: November 16, 2019

(November 13, 2019)

By: Elizabeth Payne, Ottawa Sun

A handful of people with the advocacy group Ottawa Health Coalition braved the cold outside The Ottawa Hospital’s Civic campus Monday to protest the state of health services in the province.

Albert Dupuis, co-chairman of the Ottawa Health Coalition, said the group is planning a rally at TD Place on Dec. 7 to send the message to the provincial government that the health system needs to be better funded.

“Ontario didn’t vote for this,” Dupuis said. “The government doesn’t have a mandate for what it is doing to our health-care system.

“(Ontarians) voted to end hallway medicine and you don’t end hallway medicine by cutting the funding levels for institutions that are already overstrapped.”

The province has increased funding to hospitals and longterm care, but generally not at the rate of inflation. Dupuis, who delivers medication at the General campus of The Ottawa Hospital, said that means he and his colleagues must do more with less.

Christine Collins, who attended the protest, is the sole caregiver to her elderly brother, who has dementia and disabilities. She says he needs to be in long-term care but unable to even get him she is unable to even get him on a list.

“It is killing me,” Collins said.

The Ontario Health Coalition – which is affiliated with the Ottawa group – says the provincial government has announced plans to eliminate some public health units through planned amalgamations and some ambulance services, and make cuts at hospitals and long-term care homes.

The province has backed away from some earlier announced efficiencies, including major changes to the way autism services are delivered in the province. But it is reforming the health-care system by getting rid of the regional bodies and structuring care under health teams, the first of which are expected to be announced at the end of this month.

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