Short stay hospital beds: are we ahead or behind?

We now have more reports of hospitals that will receive new funding for 'short stay' beds. Beyond Friday's announcement of funding for 21 beds at London Health Sciences, there has now been announcements for ten beds apiece for Trillium and  Credit Valley; eleven at Thunder Bay Regional; and nine at Sudbury Regional.

That means there should be announcements coming for another 160 beds at 19 hospitals, if the government's promises are to be met.  The total cost for all the beds is placed at $28.2 million for 2011-12.

But please also note: in 2010 the province lost over 600 hospital beds. So, even if there are no other bed cuts in 2011 (which would be a darn good question to clarify), Friday's announcement of funding for 221 short stay beds will still leave us behind where we were last year.

So while it's good to see the Ontario government recognize that dealing with hospital capacity and bed occupancy is part of the solution to the ER back-ups, ambulance off-load delays, and cancelled surgeries, it is hard to get too excited about this latest flurry of government announcements.

1 comment:

  1. Would someone please stop the insanity.

    In Niagara if they had not closed down two ERs and slashed 100 beds and frontline staff, they would not have significant ER back logs.

    But this new funding to solve the problem does not appear to address the initial core of the problem. However, in Niagara, they have not publicized it intensely, but in Niagara Falls they have opened up and staffed 8 beds and ......surprise, surprise the ER wait times have come down somewhat.

    Wish their experts would use some common sense.