Michael Hurley is warning the public that if the new provincial government follows through with its efficiency program, that North Bay’s Regional Health Centre will feel the impact.
“We want to bring to attention if the policy commitments of the progressive conservatives were to be implemented we would not be looking at ending hallway medicine we would be looking at very deep cuts,” Hurley told Rogers Radio’s Bob Coles.
Hurley, the president of Ontario Council of Hospital Unions held a press conference in North Bay Wednesday as part of a provincial tour called, “Hallway Medicine, it can be fixed.”
OCHU, the hospital division of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (OCHU/CUPE), has crunched the numbers on three key Ford proposals and their impact on many community hospitals across the province including North Bay’s hospitals.
“The impact would be about 37 beds cut and about 156 staff and this is a hospital that has already been bleeding staff and beds not only through years of austerity but it has also been burdened by a private-public partnership model which is saddled with much higher operating costs than a normally built owned and operated public hospital,” Hurley continued.
Finance Minister and Nipissing MPP Vic Fedeli reacted quickly to Hurley’s comments.
“Premier Ford was clear during the campaign that no one will lose a job, and we will be hiring doctors and nurses,” said Fedeli in an email to BayToday.ca.
“We’ve also committed to 15,000 long-term care beds over five years, and 30,000 over 10 years to help eliminate hallway medicine in Ontario.
“Let’s not forget it was the previous Liberal government who was solely responsible for cutting 388 frontline workers at the North Bay Regional Health Centre.”