There are curious choices made in our health care system. In September of 2011, Annapolis Valley Health reduced clinic hours in Berwick and Wolfville as a way to save money.
In the spring of 2012 the health authority made $100,000 in cuts to their food services in Valley Regional Hospital, Kentville. In May they further reduced clinic services by cutting access to X-rays 30 percent in Wolfville and 40 percent in Berwick.
These clinic reductions force more patients to travel to Valley Regional Hospital in Kentville. Whether patients are seen by appointment or at an ER visit it puts more strain on front-line medical staff in Kentville. Yet this week AVH announced it’s cutting 2.5 nurse positions from the VRH ER and that another two nursing positions will be cut in other departments!
Have they forgotten their mandate or are they trying to coerce the government into giving them more money?
What are their priorities? Their first choice is always to cut front-line care, but there is no evidence that executives bear any fiscal pain. AVH traditionally has administrative costs well above the national average (as much as 60 percent higher), yet manages to find the funds five days a week to drive food for a subsidized lunch program for 160 executives and white-collar workers in their corporate bunker on the other side of town. What does this perk cost? And could it pay to preserve the nursing positions being cut?
How do you send more people to hospital to be attended to by fewer staff and claim not to impact patient care and overall performance? How do AVH president Janet Knox, the Health Minister and Premier justify this?
This is how one health authority acts, what are the province’s other nine up to?