Hospital has a future, says Mitchell


By Kiel Edge

Huron‑Bruce MPP Carol Mitchell says Kincardine’s hospital is in no danger of closing, despite recent service cuts.
Mitchell met with a group of Kincardine councillors û Ron Hewitt, Ken Craig, Randy Roppel and mayor Larry Kraemer û and CAO John deRosenroll during August’s AMO conference in Ottawa. During the meeting, Mitchell reassured the delegation that Kincardine’s hospital will be staying open.

"All‑in‑all, it was an excellent meeting," Kraemer told council Sept. 3. "We got the information we needed and (discussed) as much as we could."

The meeting, which lasted 70 minutes, also included a discussion on council’s upcoming meeting with various health care stakeholders. Mitchell said she supported the idea of the meeting and would likely attend. She also suggested inviting South Bruce Grey Health Centre CEO Paul Davies and SBGHC board chairperson John Haggerty to take part in the discussions.
Council agreed with Mitchell’s recommendation and will extend invitations to Davies, Mitchell and Haggerty. Councillor Ron Hewitt brought forward the idea of a meeting last month. Council is planning to sit down with representatives from: the SBGHC board, Kincardine's medical staff, LHIN representatives, Huron‑Kinloss council, the hospital foundation and various other community groups.

Municipal staff said no date has been officially set for the meeting; it will depend on the personal schedules of the people invited.
"Carol Mitchell is supportive of our meeting and she thinks we're doing the right thing," said Hewitt.
Mitchell also said she's in support of a new hospital coming to Kincardine. Roppel said she is committed to the facility being retooled or rebuilt to create a better service level.

Family health teams were also on the agenda. Kincardine’s application for a family health team is supported by Mitchell and there is the possibility of OHIP‑funded physiotherapy being a part of the team down the road.
AMO conference briefs:

*The Province of Ontario presented Kincardine with a grant for $721,000 to use on capital projects. Overall, more than $1.1‑billion was given to Ontario municipalities.

*Kincardine's delegation met with a representative from the Health Minister's office. Kincardine discussed its resolution passed this summer calling for medical colleges to ease entry requirements in an effort to limit the province’s doctor shortage. More than 100 municipalities have signed on in support of the resolution so far. Kraemer said the idea has been well‑received by government officials.