The Laker News logo as created by Liane Rogers. (Healey photo)

From releases sent out by N.S. NDP and the N.S. Liberals

HALIFAX: Families and seniors are forced to wait hours for care at emergency rooms across the province, and health care workers continue to do their best while dealing with significant staffing shortages.

The Houston government must address the very serious issues in ER’s across Nova Scotia. 

“We’ve heard from many, many people who are worried about a loved one that’s had to wait hours to be seen in an ER, or hours for an ambulance,” said NDP Health and Wellness spokesperson Susan Leblanc. “And we know that health care workers are going above and beyond but they can’t do it alone.

“There needs to be real action from the Houston government to improve the state of emergency departments in Nova Scotia.” 

Recent reports show there are over 1600 nursing vacancies in the province, and 165 doctor vacancies. Last year, 43,000 people left ERs without being seen, up 60 per cent from the year before.

People like Donna McInnis and Jennifer Lee-Parsons, have recently waited hours for an ambulance for their injured family members. 

“When Tim Houston was elected he said he knew how to fix things but there is so much about our health care system that has gotten worse in the last year, not better,” said Leblanc. “People want strong, public health care when and where they need it. “

Government is about making choices and the Premier needs to choose to put public dollars where they’re most needed and improve things in emergency rooms across the province.” 

The Public Accounts Committee will review the issue of ER understaffing today. 

N.S. Liberals release:

One week after two of Nova Scotia’s top doctors warned people about the overcrowding in the province’s emergency rooms, the Houston government remains silent on the issue.

Dr. Andrew Lynk, chief of pediatrics at the IWK Health Centre described the state of the hospital as the worst he’s seen in his 30 year career. Reports of people waiting hours to receive care and staff burnout are becoming far too
common, yet the Houston government has not meaningfully addressed the ongoing crisis.

“The rise of respiratory illnesses and influenza has more children than ever seeking care at the IWK, putting strain on an already vulnerable system,” says Health and Wellness shadow minister Brendan Maguire. “While parents and healthcare workers are sounding the alarm about our hospitals, the Houston government is nowhere to be seen.”

Over a year ago, the Houston government was elected on a mandate to fix healthcare, but since coming into office the doctor waitlist has nearly doubled, forcing more people to go to the emergency room to access primary care.

Without serious solutions to tackle the issue, the problem will only get worse.

“Nova Scotians are worried about the state of the healthcare system and Premier Houston should be too,” says Maguire.