It is heartbreaking and infuriating that someone died while waiting for care in the waiting room of the Dr. Everett Chalmers Hospital in Fredericton, and it demonstrates the horrible consequences of our health care crumbling around us.
Healthcare workers, like doctors and nurses, are strained and working under challenging conditions. Ultimately, patients are experiencing the consequences of underfunding healthcare, and in this case, a person has died in an ER waiting room.
Horizon Health Network doing an internal review is not good enough. This is why we have an Office of the Chief Coroner – to look into unexpected deaths and make recommendations to prevent it from happening again. This isn’t about blaming a specific person at all – this is about having accountability and changing the system for the better, which could save lives. And that’s what this is about: saving lives.
Healthcare workers need and deserve support, and they need to be listened to when they offer solutions. We need to train, recruit, and retain them, which includes investing in their education and ensuring they have fair compensation and working conditions.
There has been more than $800 million in surpluses the last two years that the Premier has chosen not to invest in healthcare. With the fragile state of healthcare in the province, there should be no surpluses left after properly investing in our healthcare.
The terrifying reality is that more people are going to die if we don’t urgently fix the state of healthcare in our province.