Re: Article, front page, May 23, 2012 (“Health-care slight”).
Kevin Krueger is full of BS. I want the Royal Inland Hospital (RIH) to provide us with long-term care if I have Alzheimer’s or cancer. There are lots of us old people like you, Mel, who will be using the RIH in the next 10 years. I’m glad Vernon is getting more beds, it’s about time.
Kevin Krueger wants to implement the RIH “master plan.” Guess what their first priority is … a new parkade in front of the hospital (and take out the old tress on Columbia Street (the first priority should have been more beds.
I want the Interior Health Authority (IHA) to be replaced by the old RIH board. The latter gave us more local control. Interior Health Authority has several criteria that they never expressed.
1) IHA allows the provincial government greater control of hospital and health care.
2) IHA tries to reduce staffs: outsource the cafeteria and hospital meals to Vernon, laundry to Kelowna, reduce janitorial staffs, get rid of male nurse to help lift the heavy patients, cut back on the floors/nurses so there are more patients in beds in the hallway (20 years ago, there were 400 beds at RIH, now only 250 beds), try to stop the RIH Auxiliary from the hospital until public opinion stepped forward.
3) IHA is mandated to cut costs. Jobs and pension benefits, etc., must go. I agree RIH should balance their books.
IHA wants the “state of the art” medical program and staff. But RIH can’t be a state of the art hospital and a long-term care hospital at the same time. The emergency and day surgery should have been put in a new building downtown and the old RIH should have been developed into a long-term care hospital.
Here’s my idea of what the old RIH should do over the next 10 years:
1) Restore its 400 beds and have them staffed by nurses.
2) The nurses should have room and board in the old nurses’ quarter.
3) Wives and husbands of too sick patients can also stay/rent in the old nurses’ quarter.
4) RIH can be a regional hospital for serious accident patients.
PS – Thank the nurses on 6 South when I had my surgery.