At an announcement this morning at the Northumberland Hills Hospital (NHH), MPP David Piccini announced $3.79 Million in new annual funding for the Hospital. The formula has been revised so that this will continue in future years. Bob Sanderson, Warden Northumberland County said: “By rectifying an historical inequity in hospital funding formulas, the Province is ensuring that the dedicated staff, physicians and volunteers of NHH have the support they need to continue delivering excellent care to local residents.” NHH CEO Linda Davis was clearly happy with the change and said that “this announcement is a turning point in the evolution of Northumberland Hills Hospital” and “We know all too well what our priority needs are. We have – until now – been unable to fully invest in them.” But now the Hospital can.
David said that the Province is “committed to ending hallway healthcare” and has noted the increased pressure on hospitals, especially mid-sized ones like NHH. He said that “funding has not matched the budget”. He commented that it was a real challenge working with the previous funding.
Also at the announcement were Deputy Mayor Suzanne Séguin, MP Philip Lawrence, some County councillors and County staff as well as a good number of supporters and hospital staff. They all gave David a standing ovation for the announcement.
CEO Linda Davis said that “in 2016, NHH consolidated medical/surgical inpatient care onto the 2B side … but shortly thereafter patient volumes surged and what was envisioned as a manageable 36-bed 2B unit swelled dramatically to a 52-bed unit. This has not been ideal for patients, their families or NHH staff, but with our previous funding, we were unable to re-open 2A. Today’s announcement will allow us to do this, and return our 2B and 2A medical/surgical units to appropriate sizes better able to care for the high volumes of patients that we are now seeing while still – and this is key – maintaining a balanced budget. It will also permit us to plan for much needed improvements in our ED, mental health and ambulatory care programs, all of which will contribute to easing hallway healthcare for our community.”
Penny Baird (RN) and Dr. Andrew Stratford also spoke; Penny described the difficult conditions for nurses that would now be eased and Dr. Stratford was highly appreciative of the nursing staff and thanked Piccini for the increased funding since up till now “it has felt like re-arranging deck-chairs” but now this has “given us hope again”.
Bob Sanderson remarked to David that “you now know how to get a standing ovation”. NHH Board chair Pam Went said the “NHH is an efficient hospital, and it simply cannot meet today’s patient needs or the needs of tomorrow without net new investment”. CEO Linda Davis once again thanked Piccini and Christine Elliott, Minister of Health and said “You have listened”.
In June of this year, there was an announcement of an additional $1M in funding; I have confirmed that the $3.79M is additional to the $1M. $4.79M is a big addition to the annual operating budget of $70M.
See links below photos.
- Province Increases funds by 1 Million per year – 28 June 2019