Pressure on Ontario to ‘cut the cuts’ on hospital funding

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The Ontario Health Coalition says it will be putting pressure on the provincial government this fall to “cut the cuts” being made to hospital funding.

READ MORE: Liberals can find ways to save on health-care without hospital cuts: McGuinty

Executive Director of the Coalition, Natalie Mehra, says Hamilton’s hospitals are at a crisis point.

“For the last four years, hospital funding has been frozen at zero per cent increasing,” Mehra said. “As inflation runs at two per cent, population growth runs at one per cent, aging adds one per cent, and then there’s increase utilization, which is about one per cent. So just to maintain operating levels, hospitals need that five per cent increase.

Mehra added that the newest cuts at St. Joe’s and Hamilton Health Sciences amount to $27 million.

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While Ontario NDP leader Andrea Horwath called it “hallway medicine.”

“People lined up on stretchers in hallways. People are waiting hours and hours and hours on end to be admitted. We have a crisis of overcrowding where hospitals are running far over the capacity that is considered to be safe.”

READ MORE: Ontario nurses warn of increased risk of patients dying due to hospital cuts and layoffs

In September, a public meeting will be held in Hamilton to launch a campaign that will bring rallies to cities across the province.

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