QUEEN’S PARK – Several Ontario hospitals announced frontline health care job cuts today as a result of budget constraints.  The cuts mainly target Registered Nurses.

Ontario PC Health Critic Jeff Yurek commented, “Our hospitals are in crisis, and frontline healthcare workers are‎ ending up as targets because of the Liberal Government’s mismanagement.  For the fourth consecutive year, hospitals throughout the province have had their budgets frozen, forcing layoffs and closure of hospital beds.  This government is making it increasingly difficult for hospitals to meet the health care needs of Ontarians.”

The Windsor Regional Hospital could face a shortfall of up to $20 million dollars, while the Grand River Hospital in Kitchener-Waterloo anticipates a $10 million dollar budget shortfall. The end result is the loss of 120 nursing jobs for Windsor Hospital and 38 jobs for Grand River.

Due to years of frozen budgets many hospitals are forced to make tough decisions to either cut staff or services.  “Just recently we heard of the cancellation and postponing of hip and knee surgeries throughout the province due to lack of funding.  Now we are seeing staff cuts that will result in decreased care for Ontarians in our hospitals,” stated Yurek.

The Liberals have wasted billions of dollars which could have gone into our healthcare system,” added Yurek. “As a result of their mismanagement, they have cut $54 million from the health care budget, and froze hospital budgets which has resulted in the cancellation of surgeries throughout Ontario, cuts in nursing positions.  More recently St. Joseph’s Healthcare in Hamilton announced that they will be closing a seven bed mental health unit.

“Ontario is blessed with dedicated frontline health care workers; the government’s decision to continue to cut funding at the expense of Ontario’s skilled nurses is not the answer and will affect patient care,” concluded Yurek.