2/22/13

Ontario cuts cataract surgeries by 10%




A senior director of the North East LHIN has told the North Bay Nipissing that the government cut cataract surgeries by 10% across the province this year.  This has forced the North Bay Regional Health Centre to stop such surgeries until April 1 (the beginning of the fiscal year).  Another recent report indicates that the Hotel Dieu in Kingston is now performing 10 cataract surgeries per week until the end of March -- down from 60 per week.

While, in the past, global funding allowed local hospitals to determine local needs, the government's new "fee for service funding" (aka "patient based funding") gives all that power to the province.  For some reason, Toronto decided to cut 10% across the province, it seems.  

Local decision making anyone? 

Moreover, where was the public discussion (or even notification) of this decision?  We are almost at the end of the fiscal year, and this is the first that I, at least, have ever heard of a decision to cut cataract surgeries by 10% this year.  

2 comments:

  1. The Ottawa Citizen offers this explanation from the Champlain LHIN CEO, Chantale LeClerc, for the cuts to cataract surgeries in a news story today:

    "Though Eastern Ontario hospitals are performing fewer cataract surgeries than they did last year - they've dropped from 11,400 to a projected 9,800 at The Ottawa Hospital, for example - Le-Clerc said wait times have increased only slightly.

    "That's because the numbers in the past few years were inflated by extra spending designed to reduce wait times, she said. The provincial average is now 132 days, well below the government's 182-day target."

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