A proposal to integrate hospitals in Peterborough and Lindsay as one organization has been scrapped.
In a release issued Friday, the boards for both Peterborough Regional Health Centre and Ross Memorial Hospital in Lindsay stated that they have “mutually agreed” that they will not proceed with a proposal announced in June to integrate the hospitals into a single hospital network with two sites.
The decision was accepted by the board of Central East Local Health Integration Network on Oct. 31. The decision was announced Friday.
“Both hospitals approached the proposed integration optimistically and with our minds open to all possibilities and we received valuable feedback from system partners, staff and physicians, volunteers, patients, donors and the general public,” stated RMH board chair Val Harris.
“Based on our comprehensive examination, we believe that now is not the time to integrate our two hospitals into a single organization with two sites.”
A number of town halls were held to receive feedback on the proposal which included examining delivery of clinical and front-line services, back-office functions and leadership and/or governance.
Some groups including the Ontario Health Coalition expressed concerns over potential job cuts.
PHRHC board chair Adair Ireland-Smith says under current provincial legislation, both the Central East LHIN and the hospitals within it have a legal duty to identify and explore opportunities for integration.
“While we will not proceed at this time with integrating into a single hospital corporation, we remain committed to our shared patient care goals. We’d like to thank everyone who has taken an interest in these discussions and provided feedback over the past several months.”
The Central East LHIN board stated it was pleased with both hospitals’ leadership and reaffirmed commitment to continue to work together to explore other collaboration and partnership opportunities.
“While the hospitals are not pursuing a governance integration at this time, we will continue to support them in their efforts to build on their existing partnerships and collaborations in service delivery areas such as diagnostic imaging, dialysis services, laboratory medicine, mental health and addictions services, obstetrics, pediatrics, ophthalmology and orthopedic surgery in order to improve patient access to high quality services, support health system transformation and to make the best use of the public’s investment,” stated Louis O’Brien, chair of Central East LHIN Board of Directors.