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One Peterborough clinic ‘interested’ in private surgeries after province announces plan to clear backlog, says MPP Smith

Posted: January 19, 2023

(January 19, 2023)

By: Taylor Clysdale, The Peterborough Examiner

As the province opens up the rules to allow private clinics to do more surgeries, Peterborough’s MPP says one local clinic could come on board.

“There is at least one clinic that’s expressed an interest in being able to do it,” said Dave Smith, on Wednesday, Jan. 18, a day after the province’s announcement.

That clinic can’t be named yet since a formal request hasn’t been made, but it could take part in what many are calling a drastic change in Ontario’s health-care system to clear a growing backlog. Smith also didn’t specify what type of surgery the clinic would provide.

On Jan. 17, Premier Doug Ford announced changes which would allow independent health care clinics to do MRIs, CT scans and other procedures, to try and clear out the backlog of thousands of waiting patients.

“The status quo is not working,” said the premier, who said operations will still be covered under OHIP.

But the announcement has come under scrutiny from the official opposition and health care critics. The NDP has called it a “privatization scheme.” The Ontario Health Coalition, an advocacy group dedicated to keeping health care publicly funded, said the move was a “major threat.”

Peterborough This Week reached out to Peterborough Regional Health Centre (PRHC) for comment but was told there wasn’t much to say just yet.

“Hospitals across Ontario are currently in the process of seeking additional information and clarification regarding the government’s announcement earlier this week. At this time, we will not be providing any additional statement,” reads the hospital’s response.

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