NDP MPP Cindy Forster urges Liberal Government to reverse its decision on Welland hospital closure

Welland MPP Cindy Forster was joined by local advocates and the Ontario Health Coalition this morning in Queen’s Park for a press conference to urge the Liberal government to reverse its ill-informed and short-sighted decision to close the Welland Hospital.

“The Welland Hospital is an integral part of south Niagara’s healthcare network,” said Forster. “All over our province, we’re seeing the effects of hospital overcrowding, and as my friends and colleagues have mentioned today, this decision will have devastating impacts on crowding levels in the Niagara region, forcing families to drive almost an hour in case of emergency.”

Stemming from a 2012 report delivered by NHS supervisor Kevin Smith titled Restructuring of the Niagara Health System,the closure of the hospital would mean the loss of  South Niagara’s only emergency room and two extended hour urgent care centers—along with numerous other health care services. 

“For too long we’ve seen this Liberal government cut critical healthcare services in our communities and the most recent Liberal budget does nothing to improve wait times, front line staff, and basic care for the families who need it most,” Forster said.

“Worse, if the government proceeds with the closure, the closure would be one of the largest in Ontario’s history putting the health of my community at extreme risk.”

During Question Period today, Forster demanded the health minister reverse the Wynne government’s decision to close the Welland hospital.  This afternoon, the Welland MPP will be submitting thousands of signed petitions in the Legislature from families in the community who want to save the hospital.