Brown stands up for local hospitals
(March 9, 2016) Following the news that the Royal Victoria Hospital Regional Health Centre (RVH) in Barrie was facing an $8-million budget shortfall, Leader of the Official Opposition and Simcoe North MPP Patrick Brown urged the Premier to properly fund Simcoe County hospitals.
"Royal Victoria Regional Hospital Health Centre delivers some of the best quality patient care by some of the greatest staff in the province," said Brown during Question Period. "But this government's health cuts have forced them to find $8 million dollars in savings."
The Liberal Government has frozen hospital budgets for four consecutive years, and the most recent tabled budget includes only a negligible increased investment. As a result of the inadequate funding from the province, RVH is being forced to eliminate 24 vacant positions as well as 32 full-time positions.
"The Liberals have said they were going invest more in health care. RVH only got $500,000 dollars in, and $8-million dollars is coming out. The Liberal math doesn't add up," added Leader Patrick Brown. "They had 1,700 new patients at RVH last year alone. Instead of investing in those new patients and giving them the care they deserve – the Liberals cut $8-million from their budget."
RVH is not the only hospital in Simcoe County which has been forced to cut staff and services after inadequate funding from the Liberal Government. After a $5-million funding gap, Orillia Soldiers' Memorial Hospital was forced to cut an operating room, complex continuing care beds, and their geriatric day hospital. The Georgian Bay General Hospital (GBGH) in Midland is facing the potential closure of its obstetrics unit alongside a $5.2-million cut. GBGH's Penetanguishene site is closing down altogether.
"Why does the Premier continue to target hospitals and the patients they serve?" concluded Patrick Brown.