Skip to main content

Sudbury reduces hospital ALC problem -- by opening new beds

As part of the recent public relations campaign by Local Health Integration Networks (LHINs), the CEO of the Northeast LHIN, Louise Paquette, has told Northern Life that they have reduced the number of alternate level of care patients in the four largest northeast hospitals by half. 

The article discusses in more detail the situation in Sudbury.  Here the hospital says the number of alternate level of care (ALC) patients has fallen from a high of 190 to 210 ALC patients to just 91 ALC patients.  That would mean a reduction of somewhere between 99 and 119 ALC patients. 

Sounds impressive, right?  Well here's the interesting part.  The hospital CEO credits the reduction to the opening of 116 long term care beds at St. Gabriel's and Pioneer Manor. 



The government is practically allergic to opening new beds in hospitals or LTC facilities no matter how much the demand. So, this solution is definitely not typical.


And notably, the numbers suggest that the government's much bragged about ALC strategy ('Aging at Home' or as some call it, 'Aging Alone') did not play a major role.  


In fact, other factors (like the Aging at Home) may have actually added 17 patients to the hospital ALC rolls:  i.e. a reduction of only 99 ALC patients in the hospital despite the addition of 116 LTC beds.

This is more evidence that new beds are going to have to be a significant part of the solution to the hospital overload problem -- along, of course, with more public home care services. 



Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Public sector employment in Ontario is far below the rest of Canada

The suggestion that Ontario has a deficit because its public sector is too large does not bear scrutiny. Consider the following. 

Public sector employment has fallen in the last three quarters in Ontario.  Since 2011, public sector employment has been pretty flat, with employment up less than 4 tenths of one percent in the first half of 2015 compared with the first half of 2011.


This contrasts with public sector employment outside of Ontario which has gone up pretty consistently and is now 4.7% higher than it was in the first half of 2011.



Private sector employment has also gone up consistently over that period. In Ontario, it has increased 4.3% since the first half of 2011, while in Canada as a whole it has increased 4.9%.







As a result, public sector employment in Ontario is now shrinking as a percentage of the private sector workforce.  In contrast, in the rest of Canada, it is increasing. Moreover, public sector employment is muchhigher in the rest of Canada than in Ontario.  Indeed as…

The long series of failures of private clinics in Ontario

For many years, OCHU/CUPE has been concerned the Ontario government would transfer public hospital surgeries, procedures and diagnostic tests to private clinics. CUPE began campaigning in earnest against this possibility in the spring of 2007 with a tour of the province by former British Health Secretary, Frank Dobson, who talked about the disastrous British experience with private surgical clinics.

The door opened years ago with the introduction of fee-for-service hospital funding (sometimes called Quality Based Funding). Then in the fall of 2013 the government announced regulatory changes to facilitate this privatization. The government announced Request for Proposals for the summer of 2014 to expand the role of "Independent Health Facilities" (IHFs). 

With mass campaigns to stop the private clinic expansion by the Ontario Health Coalition the process slowed.  

But it seems the provincial Liberal government continues to push the idea.  Following a recent second OCHU tour wi…

Hospital worker sick leave: too much or too little?

Ontario hospital workers are muchless absent due to illness or disability than hospital workers Canada-wide.  In 2014, Ontario hospital workers were absent 10.2 days due to illness or disability, 2.9 days less than the Canada wide average – i.e. 22% less.  In fact, Ontario hospital workers have had consistently fewer sick days for years.

This is also true if absences due to family or personal responsibilities are included.
Statistics Canada data for the last fifteen years for Canada and Ontario are reported in the chart below, showing Ontario hospital workers are consistently off work less.
Assuming, Ontario accounts for about 38% of the Canada-wide hospital workforce, these figures suggest that the days lost due to illness of injury in Canada excluding Ontario are about 13.6 days per year ([13.6 x 0.68] + [10.2 x 0.38] = 13.1).

In other words, hospital workers in the rest of Canada are absent from work due to illness or disability 1/3 more than Ontario hospital workers. 

In fact, Canad…