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  • Writer's pictureBradfordToday Staff

Residents can have their say at Ontario Health Coalition hearings

Tour throughout province will examine how to improve and protect local hospitals; Barrie and Simcoe County meeting planned for June 11

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In response to more than 1,200 closures of emergency departments and other local hospital services over the last year, the Ontario Health Coalition (OHC) is holding public hearings across Ontario to develop recommendations for the future of our local hospitals, including small, rural and northern community hospitals.

Mid-size or larger local hospitals will be included where they are at risk of closure. The hearings are an opportunity for patients and community residents, service agencies, patient advocacy groups, concerned citizens, municipal leaders, health care professionals and others to provide their thoughts. The results of the hearings will be collected in a report with recommendations on how to protect and improve, especially small and rural, local hospitals.

Hearings will be open to all Ontario residents. They will be held with both online (Zoom) and in-person options so everyone can attend and participate. People may submit written or spoken statements on their experiences and concerns to an expert, non-partisan panel. The deadline to register to make a verbal presentation at their local hearing is Friday, June 7 at 5 p.m.

Presenters will be able to speak for a maximum of seven minutes. The deadline for written submissions is Thursday, June 20 at 5 p.m.

“These hearings are a chance for people in rural and northern Ontario to share their experiences and to safeguard and improve our local hospitals, especially those at risk of closures,” said Brenda Scott, chair of the coalition's small, rural & local hospital committee. “We want to hear what has been cut, what if anything has improved, and what is needed to improve equity, save our hospitals and improve health care for rural Ontario.”


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