December 6th, 2023

NDP: Conservative neglect putting Ontarians, and especially women’s, health at risk

QUEEN’S PARK – The Auditor General’s report today shows blatant negligence from the government and no plan in sight to address record-breaking numbers of ER closures and patient wait-times.

“A well-functioning public hospital system is the bedrock on which everything else rests. Under this government, Ontarians have lost complete trust that someone will look after them, if they turn up sick at an emergency room. In fact, Ontarians no longer trust an ER will be open at all,” said Marit Stiles, Leader of the Official Opposition NDP.

Between July 2022 and June 2023, there were 203 unplanned ER closures. Over the last decade, patient wait times to see a doctor have gone up by 30 minutes, to two hours, after triage. The AG report cites staffing shortages as the main reason for ER closures and long wait-times.

In the North, between July 2022 and September 2023, 10 hospitals were forced to close their obstetrics services.

“We see no plan, no strategy, no vision from this government to address growing health care inequities, and especially in the North,” said France Gélinas (Nickle Belt), NDP Health critic. “If one hospital closes its ER or its obstetric department, the next one is three to five hours away. Where does Doug Ford expect pregnant women to go to give birth?”

“The Conservatives’ negligence is costing Ontarians their health and well-being. It's putting people’s lives at risk. The people of this province deserve better. They deserve someone who cares and is willing to put them first over their selected insiders,” said Stiles.