Ontario official opposition health critic France Gélinas is pushing the Ontario government to take more action to keep emergency rooms open and to move away from any actions that promote private health care.
Gélinas was speaking out in the Ontario Legislature Wednesday when she asked a question about the thousands of Ontario residents opposed to the idea of private health care, as was demonstrated by the referendum held by the Ontario Health Coalition in late May..
Gélinas said more and more Ontario residents are visiting Queen's Park to voice their worries about health care.
"Today Brock University students are here to show their dissatisfaction with this government's privatization agenda. People representing Minden, Mount Forest, Palmerston, Listowel, Wingham, Seaforth, Clinton, Grey Bruce, Chesley, Thessalon are here, asking the Premier to reopen their ER (emergency room) or keep their ER open," said Gélinas.
"We live in a democracy, Speaker. All those people are coming to Queen’s Park because they are scared. They’re anxious. They’re worried. They want to be heard. Why won’t the Premier listen to them?" Gélinas asked.
Ontario Health Minister Sylvia Jones responded to Gélinas by saying that recent hearings held for Bill 60 (Your Health Act, 2023) indicated that many Ontarians were in fact pleased with the changes.
“I’m going to highlight a couple of things that came out of those committee hearings: 'I’m here to say that Bill 60 is a good start in eliminating Ontario’s surgical backlogs. We are pleased to see this government introduce significant changes to our system that will better serve Ontarians within a publicly funded system. Overall, this bill sets up a good framework to create a system of surgical care that is patient-centred and promotes patient choice.' That comes from the president and CEO of CE Health," said Jones.