CFBB Opinion- $6 million Funding Announcement for Brampton Civic Hospital.
William Osler Health System Press release:
We’re pleased to announce that we received an extra $6 million to support the opening of all 608 funded beds at Brampton Civic. This means we can improve access to care and reduce the length of hospital stays for those we serve.
Just over a week ago, Brampton Springdale MPP Harinder Malhi joined Mayor Jeffrey and other distinguished guests to accept a funding pledge of $6 million dollars to William Osler Health System. The funds would be to support the opening of all 608 beds at Brampton Civic Hospital.
To most this announcement was greeted with great enthusiasm. I however felt a great sense of relief, followed shortly by anger. Anger that it took several years to get this last stage of funding! Funding for beds that were promised over 9 years ago! To make matters worse, this is a hospital that not only had the busiest ER in the Province, more recently had become the busiest in the country! In a city that has seen explosive growth surpassing 600,000 residents, making it the 9th largest in Canada!
Why did it take several years to obtain this last $6 million dollars of funding? Why weren’t alarm bells ringing at Queen’s Park? Over the summer both the leader of the PC party Patrick Brown and NDP leader Andrea Horvath addressed the overcrowding at Brampton Civic Hospital in the Provincial Legislature. Overcrowding that had patients strewn in hallways on stretchers, waiting for beds that were not available. It was impacting the quality of healthcare in our city and putting an unnecessary strain onto the front line staff. The lack of bed space prolonged ER wait times and frustrated patients and their families. All it took was an additional $6 million dollars to finally complete our hospital almost a decade after opening its doors.
With what seems like weekly funding announcements emanating from Queen’s Park, the countess scandals that have wasted billions of tax dollars and a civil service “Sunshine List” that’s out of control, it’s SHAMFEFUL that Brampton residents have had to wait this long! Only $6 million to finally open all 608 beds! Where were our Brampton MPP’s to openly and aggressively lobby for this urgently needed funding?
I believe it’s time to call out this Provincial government on its poor planning for Brampton’s healthcare needs. It’s time to say that it’s unacceptable to play politics with our healthcare! It’s time to get what this city urgently needs and deserves, a second full service hospital.
We urge all Brampton MPP’s and Mayor Jeffrey to demand that Peel Memorial Phase 2 planning begin immediately. Planning that includes a second ER for Brampton and 200+ in-patient beds. We simply can’t wait another decade for additional healthcare services.
We are the only Top 10 City in Canada with one emergency room and one full service hospital. A Top 10 Canadian city with less than 1.0 bed per 100,000 residents, whereas the national average is more than double that at 2.3 beds per 100,000 residents. Earlier studies had shown that Brampton would need 930 beds back in 2008, yet we will only have 608 beds fully open in early 2017.
I acknowledge that the opening of Peel Memorial Phase 1 and its Urgent Care Centre will help relieve some of the pressure from Brampton Civic in the short term. However, planning for only one ER Department for our fast growing city , simply put , is inconceivable and irresponsible.