QUEEN’S PARK – The Financial Accountability Office (FAO) revealed that Ford Conservatives continue to dramatically starve the public health care system of resources – just as flu season arrives, ERs face closures, and Toronto reported an ambulance shortage just last night. MPP Catherine Fife (Waterloo), NDP Finance critic responds:
“Ford has been recklessly starving our public healthcare system, leaving us all in a vulnerable position as flu season arrives and we may need to access health care services.
It’s alarming that this government seems to have learned nothing from the pandemic. Instead of strengthening our public health care system - and supporting the public services that help people live better lives - Ford hides taxpayer money in contingency funds for his government’s own discretionary use.
If last year was any indication, we’re likely to see more ER closures and more ambulance shortages. We deserve a government that learns from their mistakes and recognizes how frightening these shortages are for people. This government seems incapable of it. Marit Stiles and the NDP will be fighting for better.
The FAO’s report can be read here.
Ford spent $1 billion less on the health sector than this time last year. That includes:
- $150 million less on payments to physicians
- $184 million less on Major Hospital Projects
- $322 million less on public health, which includes $66 million less on Official Local Health Agencies
Under spending on other vital programs include:
- $241 million decrease for community and social spending
- $160 million less than planned on Postsecondary Education, including $72 million less on operating grants for colleges and universities, and student financial assistance programs
- $75 million less than planned in Financial and Employment supports which includes ODSP and Ontario Works.