QUEEN’S PARK – Ontario NDP Finance Critic John Vanthof said the latest report by the independent Financial Accountability Office confirms that more Liberal cuts to healthcare are coming.
“Healthcare in Ontario is at a tipping point. Hospitals and emergency rooms are overcrowded, people are waiting far too long for surgeries, and hospitals are being forced to treat people in hallways that were never designed for patient care,” said Vanthof, MPP for Timiskaming-Cochrane. “These are the results of deep cuts to healthcare, year after year, under this Liberal government.”
According to the FAO, for the Liberals to reach their health sector expense targets, they will have to cut $400 million from healthcare spending this year, $900 million next year, and $1.5 billion dollars in 2018-19.
“Ontarians deserve better. We have to stop the cuts to healthcare in Ontario,” said Vanthof. “We need to make sure hospital funding keeps up with inflation and population growth and the unique needs of communities, each and every year. We have to stop the layoffs of nurses and healthcare workers. And, most importantly, we need a government that actually works for the people of Ontario for a change – and protects the public healthcare that all of us count on.”
The FAO raises serious concerns about the long term sustainability of Ontario’s current standard of care. According to the report, beyond 2019, healthcare cost growth and spending pressure are expected to be more than double the funding growth allowed for in the Liberal plan.
“$2.8 billion in cuts to healthcare isn’t what Premier Wynne promised, and it isn’t what people voted for. Ontarians expected, and deserve something better,” said Vanthof. “New Democrats would make investments in the healthcare system that keep pace with inflation, and with Ontario’s growing population. Ontarians should be able to access the care they need, when they need it. We can make things better; we can give people hope for the future.”