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Mayor encourages community to voice concerns about hospital – deadline Feb. 19

Mayor Peter Mertens is demonstrating council’s support for Prince Edward County Memorial Hospital by publishing requests to encourage the public to share concerns about how Quinte Health Care’s proposed changes will affect the delivery of health care services in the County.

“These ads are intended to ensure that our constituents have the information they need to support our dedicated local health care professionals and voice their concerns about the importance of retaining robust hospital services within our community.” said Mertens. “Prince Edward County Council remains concerned that the community has not been adequately consulted in advance of proposing such drastic changes to Prince Edward County Memorial Hospital. We are confident that if adequate time is provided, discussions with the Prince Edward Family Health Team will enable the development of appropriate health care solutions for our community.”

This call to action was generated in response to a presentation made by Quinte Health Care (QHC) at Committee of the Whole on Jan. 24 by CEO Mary Clare Egberts and vice-president and chief nursing officer Katherine Stansfield. They provided an overview of QHC’s proposed solutions to address its funding shortfall in 2013/14 – and how these solutions may result in a reduction of services at Prince Edward County Memorial Hospital. QHC’s presentation is available on the County’s website at www.pecounty.on.ca .

The advertisements published this week are intended to provide local stakeholders with information they may be looking for to ensure their concerns are heard at the provincial level. The ad includes key contact information for elected officials and health care representatives that may have a say in the future of health care in Prince Edward County, and encourages local residents to phone, write, or email concerns to these individuals to raise awareness of the significant community support for Prince Edward County Memorial Hospital.

Several key points of concern are also summarized for the public’s convenience, addressing some of the short and long-term impacts that QHC’s proposed changes would have on the community.

For individuals who do not wish to draft a letter of their own, the ad contains a brief general statement of support that can clipped out and mailed to elected officials and health care representatives. Or copy and paste the text from below the advertisement on countylive.ca and include it in your emails, letters, or use it in your telephone conversation.

In the meantime, staff will report to the Feb. 12 meeting of council with an analysis of the implications QHC’s proposed changes will have on the municipality, including actions, solutions or mitigations the County could initiate.

“While we recognize the need to adapt and ensure fiscal responsibility, we are discouraged at the way QHC is proposing to resolve their funding challenges,” said Mertens, noting their proposal does not recognize the impact service changes will have on the patients themselves.
“Council stands behind PECMH and the community it serves. A reduction in hospital services would negatively impact not only the local economy and health care services, but the overall quality of life of County residents.”

Support PECMH

Click the advertisement above for direct email links and an easier-to-read version to print off.

For individuals who do not wish to draft a letter of their own,  copy and paste the text below and include it in your emails, letters, or use it in your telephone conversation.

I am writing to let you know I am concerned about proposed changes to Prince Edward County Memorial Hospital because of the severe and detrimental effects they will have on our community. I am requesting that adequate time be provided to conduct the fulsome consultation with our local Family Health Team, the medical community and the general public. Opportunities for innovative savings are being overlooked at Prince Edward County Memorial Hospital. More consultation is necessary to ensure that essential services are not being eliminated before adequate supports are in place, creating risk for our community and costs for system.

Mary Clare Egberts—President and CEO, QHC
265 Dundas Street East, Belleville, ON K8N 5A9
T: 613.969.7400 x 2400, F: 613.969.0486
E: megberts@qhc.on.ca
Brian Smith, Chair—Board of Governors, QHC
c/o Kathryn Noxon, EA to Board of Directors
265 Dundas Street East, Belleville, ON K8N 5A9
T: 613.969.7400 x 2199, E: knoxon@qhc.on.ca
Paul Huras, CEO —SE LHIN
Andreas von Cramon, Acting Chair — SE LHIN
71 Adam Street, Belleville, ON K8N 5K3
T: 613.967.0196, F: 613.967.1341 Toll Free: 1.866.831.5446
E: Paul.huras@lhins.on.ca
E: Andreas.voncramon@lhins.on.ca
Todd Smith, MPP— Hastings-Prince Edward
PO Box 575, Belleville, ON K8N 5B2
T: 613.962.1144, F: 613.969.6381, Toll Free: 1.877.536.6248
E: todd.smithco@pc.ola.org
Queen’s Park Address:
Room 357, Main Legislative Building,
Queen’s Park Toronto, ON M7A 1A8
T: 416.325.2702, F: 416.325.2675, E: todd.smith@pc.ola.org
Hon. Deborah Matthews—Minister of Health and LTC
Hepburn Block, 10th Floor, 80 Grosvenor Street
Toronto, ON M7A 2C4
T: 416.327.4300, F: 416.327.3679
E: Dmatthews.mpp@liberal.ola.org
Kathleen Wynne—Premier Designate and Leader,
Liberal Party of Ontario
c/o Ministry of Municipal Affairs & Housing
17th floor, 777 Bay Street, Toronto, ON M5G 2E5
T: 416.585.7000, F: 416.585.6470
E: Kwynne.mpp@liberal.ola.org
Andrea Horwath—Leader, New Democratic Party of Ontario
Room 113, Main Legislative Building, Queen’s Park
Toronto, ON M7A 1A5
T: 416.325.7116, F: 416.325.2770
E: Ahorwath-qp@ndp.on.ca
Tim Hudak—Leader, PC Party of Ontario
Room 381, Main Legislative Building, Queen’s Park
Toronto, ON M7A 1A8
T: 416.325.8454, F: 416.325.0998, E: Tim.hudak@pc.ola.org

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  1. Stu Stanley says:

    I have depended on the services of our local hospital and have had to wait to be admitted due to bed cutbacks. I have also travelled to Belleville for procedures that should be available in Picton. Even this purposed round of cuts seem out of proportion with Picton taking a biggest hit. The proposal to cut almost 50% of our beds and take major services from Picton is reckless and will endanger the safety and security of our community. Perhaps removing a level of bureaucracy would be better than cutting the front line.

    Many people, including our senior population moved to Prince Edward County knowing that we had a viable and functioning hospital. My family has 3 seniors over 80 years old. When they moved here, they expected that our hospital, Prince Edward County Memorial Hospital, would be there for them. It is an unfortunate fact that they will most likely need the services of the hospital in the foreseeable future. If one of them is hospitalized in Belleville, how will the other come to visit and help care for each other. What about Parents whose children are in the hospital and have others at home? What about those less fortunate than some who do not have a vehicle or cannot afford to drive to Belleville?

    Since amalgamation and Belleville was chosen to be the “Head Office”, Trenton Picton and Bancroft seem to only get enough so that it can be said that money is flowing to these sites. It seems to me that the plan is to continue to choke the smaller sites until there is no other alternative than to shut us down.

    These decisions could also impact any business or industry wishing to move to this area. I know I would not like to settle here knowing that there was not an adequate hospital in the area. We have some of the best Doctors and Nurses here in Picton. I know because most of them have helped me at one time or another.

    Tourism is an integral part of Prince Edward County’s economic prosperity, attracting more than 440,000 visitors annually. Many of them in the summer. Where are these visitors going to receive their medical care and are their numbers factored in to these cuts?

    The 2011 census shows Prince Edward County with a population of approximately 25,250 and Belleville with approximately 50,000. Obviously the cuts are not based on population especially if tourists are factored in.

    If these cuts are allowed, many residents will start to look for an area with better healthcare facilities ( a good hospital), myself included.

    What they seem to forget is that there is another value other than “Money” that should be considered. It is “Morally”. Before making these decisions, perhaps those making them should interchange these words and see if their ideas still fit.

  2. Sylvia Kempers says:

    My thoughts of this last attempt to save Quinte Health Care Belleville at the expense of our community are those of extreme sadness and frustration.We are and always will be proud county residents who have in the past been able to work together and have the most sincerest care one could ask for. We have also thrived because our community has supported this hospital so well. Perhaps we should endeavor to find ways to keep this as is!

  3. Jason Young says:

    Thank you for this direction. I have sent my emails & have encouraged all of my facebook friends to do so as well. Personally, this is & should be the most important topic now in Prince Edward County.

  4. Lori Rushlow says:

    on the list * sorry there is no way to correct it

  5. Lori Rushlow says:

    I emailed everyone one this.. If you email Mary Edberts this is the reponse youll get.. Email Julia Byers too I did.. I am out of the office until Monday February 11th. Please contact my Executive Assistant, Julia Byers at 613-969-7400 extension 2400 or jbyers@qhc.on.ca and she will redirect your message. Alternatively you can contact Jan Richardson, Vice President at jrichardson@qhc.on.ca.

    Thank you,
    Mary Clare Egberts

    This should be an important matter to everyone

  6. Doris Lane says:

    Everyone should this material and let all the suggested people know we do not want to lose our hospitals ability
    to serve the public–Take the time to make these contacts.
    Good work Mayor Mertens and council

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