SCUGOG: Councillors voted on Monday, June 15, to allow an additional $15,000 in spending by the Doctor’s Recruitment Committee to improve the obstetrics department at Lakeridge Health Port Perry.
The committee was created about ten years ago as a way to bring more physicians into the community. Committee member Ted Griffen explained that they hope to use the additional money to be able to eventually double the amount of babies that are born at the local hospital.
“We have about 300 births a year in our obstetrics, and that isn’t quite enough to be practical, to be looked after by themselves,” he said. “We are going to try to bring it up to 600 births. We are going to try to build up the obstetrics. If we are to build up, we are going to need at least another two obstetricians.”
Ward 2 Councillor Janna Guido added that this decision would also send a strong message about the importance of Port Perry’s hospital to the community.
“It really will validate to Lakeridge Health how important our hospital is by increasing the births and making sure that they not change it into anything but an operational hospital,” Councillor Guido said.
As well, with Uxbridge Cottage Hospital lacking a New Life Centre, Port Perry is North Durham’s only hospital to offer a dedicated wing for newborns.
It was also noted that recruitment has been a great success as Port Perry now has a total of 36 physicians. Mr. Griffen added that the Committee has been lauded in other communities as an example of effective physician recruitment.
“It’s been quite successful because doctors recruit other doctors. We’ve been the envy of a lot of towns,” Mr. Griffen explained to councillors.