SCUGOG: There has been a number of concerns from the local community about the recent Rouge Valley/Lakeridge Health integration, and how it will affect the Port Perry and Bowmanville hospitals.
On Saturday, Nov. 5th, over 600 people attended rallies, held at MPP Granville Anderson’s office, as well as in Ajax at the hospital.
Ontario Health Coalition (OHC) Executive Director, Natalie Mehra, said in a release to supporters and members, this merger could create “losses of services” for the local Durham hospitals, and the cost of the merger will “come out of money for actual health care services.”
However, MPP Granville Anderson assured, in a press release, that “there has been a considerable amount of misinformation circulating” regarding the merger.
He said in the release, he was “caught off guard” by the concerns from the OHC, and reportedly asked the Minister of Health and Long-Term Care, Eric Hoskins, if this integration will lead to a “reduction of health services in both Bowmanville and Port Perry hospitals”.
Minister Hoskins said, the Bowmanville hospital is not closing and they “will not experience any reduction in services or cuts.” He also added the integration will “expand services across Scarborough and Durham.”
Tom McHugh, Executive Vice President and Interim Chief Transformation Officer, wanted to assure residents that this integration will not mean any loss of services at the Port Perry hospital.
“With the addition of Ajax-Pickering, we will be planning the healthcare services for all of Durham. We will be a bigger, more integrated health system. For residents of Port Perry, that means more access to services close to home.”
He also added, people can expect the same level of quality care at the local hospital.
As well, Mr. McHugh said the potential benefits for the Port Perry community will “take time to realize”, but added this will lead to “seamless care” for all of Durham.
Mr. McHugh pointed to recent investments in the hospital by Lakeridge Health, such as the recent renovations, as proof the “hospital is here to stay.”