Ottawa, Ont. – Age discrimination is actively at play in Ontario’s health reforms, charge the authors of Pushed Out of Hospital, Abandoned at Home: After Twenty Years of Budget Cuts, Ontario’s Health System is Failing Patients, holding a media conference on Tuesday May 6 at 10:00 a.m. at the Royal Canadian Legion, 389-391 Richmond Road, Ottawa.
The report by the Ontario Association of Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists (OSLA) and the Ontario Council of Hospital Unions (OCHU) the hospital division of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) chronicles Ontario patients’ personal experiences with health system changes and service cuts.
In addition to detailing the report’s findings and personal patient stories, at the media conference the authors will explain why legal avenues to protect seniors are being pursued.
Pushed Out of Hospital, Abandoned at Home report is based on the personal stories of hundreds of patients and their families from across Ontario, who called a 1-800 patient hotline, set up for over a year. The report concludes that following decades of cuts to hospitals, older, frail Ontarians are being pushed out of hospital while acutely ill and they are not getting the rehabilitative therapies and restorative and convalescent care they need.
“Far from delivering ‘the right care, in the right place, at the right time,’ as the Ontario’s health minister claims, health reforms are failing Ontario patients, particularly the elderly, abysmally. Age discrimination is actively at play in Ontario’s health care system,” says OCHU’s Michael Hurley.
Over 20 years the province has cut 19,000 hospital beds, many of them assess and restore and continuing care beds, once the mainstay of convalescent care for older patients. Today access to in-hospital restorative care and rehabilitation therapies is severely reduced and the promised “outpatient” services in the community and home are virtually non-existent.
“This leaves many elderly patients, who really should be cared for in hospital, abandoned at home, without the care and therapies they need,” says OSLA’s Mary Cook.
Pushed Out of Hospital, Abandoned at Home also offers substantive solutions to make health services better for patients, particularly the elderly.
For more information please contact:
Michael Hurley President, OCHU 416-884-0770
Mary Cook Executive Director, OSLA 416-795-8711
Stella Yeadon CUPE Communications 416-559-9300