Health workers say Gorge Road Hospital must stay public

News release

Ailing hospital threatened with public/private partnership replacements

Members of the Hospital Employees’ Union who work at the Gorge Road Hospital will be at the Capital Health Region meeting tonight to tell the board that public/private partnerships are not a viable replacement option for the 25-year old, public extended care facility.

The Gorge’s care providers and other supporters will gather prior to the CHR meeting at:

6:45 p.m. Wednesday, October 4 Begbie Hall, Royal Jubilee Hospital 2102 Richmond Avenue

The health region will be deciding how to deal with the hospital’s extensive mould and other problems within the next few months and have been seriously considering replacement of the facility through public/private partnerships.

The decision will significantly impact the 96 people with disabilities and 191 frail seniors for whom the Gorge is home, those who need the 30 rehabilitation beds and many others who access the Work Readiness Program and the Psoriasis Clinic.

HEU opposes public/private partnerships and other privatization schemes in health care.

“Public/private partnerships have no place in health care and that includes extended care facilities like Gorge Road,” says HEU secretary-business manager Chris Allnutt. “Any replacement plans for the Gorge Road Hospital must remain public to ensure that residents’ housing, care and services - not profits - are the top priority.”

Allnutt recently discussed the GRH situation with health minister Mike Farnworth and urged the government to seek public, or public/not-for-profit, replacement solutions.