Health care workers rally in support of a new Health Accord

ROTHESAY: Members of CUPE Local 1252, the New Brunswick Council of Hospital Unions (NBCHU), rallied in front of the office of the Minister of Health, Ted Flemming, calling upon the Alward government to continue to push its federal counterpart for the renewal of the Health Accord.

“This week the 10-year Health Accord came to an end and we believe the effect will be devastating for healthcare delivery in this province”, said the President of the NBCHU, Norma Robinson.

“New Brunswick relies heavily on federal funding to offer healthcare services throughout the province. With the refusal of the Federal Government to renew the Accord, the province stands to lose hundreds of millions of dollars in the coming years.”

“Increasing transfer payments to the provinces by six per cent a year for the next three years like Ottawa intends to do is not going to cut it, especially for a province like New Brunswick.”

“Already, the healthcare system is being stretched to the limit in the province. Over the years, hospitals have been closed, communities in rural areas lost health services, and the level of services has been reduced. Without the renewal of the Health Accord, we will probably see more hospitals and beds closure and further reduction of services and staff, especially in smaller communities. With an aging population, this is a very scary scenario.”

“Premier Alward said that him along with other premiers stood up against the federal government’s decision. We are asking Premier Alward and Minister Flemming today to make the renewal of the Health Accord the number one priority for this government. New Brunswickers can’t afford to receive less health services”, concluded Robinson.