Committed to boosting health care in Ontario: MPP

Regarding the story that appeared in your publication, Health Coalition worried about future of small rural hospitals.

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Regarding the story that appeared in your publication, Health Coalition worried about future of small rural hospitals.

With an aging population, we cannot afford to remain mired in the old thinking of the past provincial government. It’s time to stop investing in bloated bureaucracy and start investing in front line care for patients across Ontario.

The people of Ontario have been left weighed down under a $15-billion deficit inherited from the Liberals. Had it been left unchecked, Ontario’s health-care system would be at risk.

Instead, the Government of Ontario is committed to the future of small and rural hospitals across the province. If you have an aging loved one in the hospital, it doesn’t matter who is providing your parent’s care. What matters most is that the care is there when you need it.

Critics of the government have been saying that the Ontario government is cutting health care. That couldn’t be further from the truth.

That’s why our government acted decisively to end hallway health care since forming government. We’re tackling this issue by committing to 15,000 new long-term care beds in the next five years, 1,100 additional hospital beds, repairs and upgrades for 128 hospitals and the creation of Ontario Health Teams that will put patient experience at the centre of the health care system.

In 2005, I joined thousands of people to rally to keep Wallaceburg’s Sydenham Hospital open. This is an issue that hits home for my constituents and family. Access to local health care is essential to the people of Ontario. People shouldn’t have to travel far to receive the care that they require and deserve.

We’re investing in the front-lines of our health-care system with an extra $384 million for Ontario’s hospitals, which will receive on average a two per cent increase in funding. This includes small and medium-sized hospitals.

In February, I announced a $500,000 funding boost for a planning grant to the Chatham-Kent Health Alliance. That day was my proudest one in politics. The funding is the first step in modernizing the aging Wallaceburg hospital site. The health alliance is committed to redeveloping the Wallaceburg site, and they have a real partner in the Doug Ford government.

As part of Ontario’s 2019 Budget, we announced we are investing $27 billion over the next 10 years in hospital infrastructure. This will lead to more than 3,000 new hospital beds and ensure that existing hospitals are well maintained.

Our “Government for the People” is ending hallway health care. We put people at the centre of everything to do.

Monte McNaughton

MPP, Lambton-Kent-Middlesex