With the provincial government looking to cut Ontario’s public health units down from 35 to 10, the Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington Public Health Unit has a proposed an alternative idea.
Instead of falling under the Ottawa unit, they propose they along with Eastern Ontario Public Health, Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit and Hastings-Prince Edward Public Health merge. “We felt that we could perhaps find a better grouping,” Hastings-Prince Edward Public Health’s Medical Officer of Health Piotr Oglaza says. “This is going to be a grouping of willing partners that willing to start working right away.”
He says service will not be negatively affected. The way they do business may change, but they will make sure it doesn’t impact service.
“If this is done right,” Oglaza says, “this can be a very good thing and it could result in greater efficiencies.” He says the four health units want to show that this proposal makes the most sense and will allow them to take advantage of and build on existing partnerships. “This is something that we are confident will achieve the government’s priorities while also maintaining the local flavour and the services that are offered to communities,” he adds.
Hastings-Prince Edward Public Health will be holding their board meeting on June 5th. Oglaza says they will present their proposal to them then. If that goes well, he says the next steps will be starting the consultation process with the Ministry and the government.