While Royal University Hospital is horrifically backed up, City Hospital sits half-empty
26 of 38 beds at Royal University Hospital’s emergency room were occupied Tuesday by admitted patients for whom there is no available hospital bed, the media confirmed Tuesday – causing the NDP to renew its call for the government to reopen City Hospital to acute care.
The government shut down acute care at Saskatoon’s City Hospital in 2008, and reduced its emergency room hours to daytime only.
“The decisions this government has made regarding City Hospital completely dismisses common sense and the needs of patients,” said NDP health critic Danielle Chartier. “There are not enough patient beds in Saskatoon and area. Patients are waiting in the ER for a hospital bed, and more are stuck in the waiting room while the city’s biggest and busiest ER tries to operate with only 12 beds available to ER patients.
“It’s time for the government to pull its head out of the sand. Lean is not the solution, reopening City Hospital is.”
City Hospital, Saskatoon’s newest, was purpose-built to be a state-of-the-art acute care facility, but it was revealed this spring that entire wings and at least 64 acute care hospital rooms have had their hospital beds removed so the government could move in desks for senior administrators to use them as offices.
City hospital is also being used for day surgeries, outpatient procedures, and to house seniors waiting for long-term care.
Chartier added that addressing the seniors care crisis would also alleviate the congestion in hospitals, as far too many seniors are forced to wait in hospital beds for lengthy periods because no seniors care home space is available for them.