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Getting to the hospital a worry for many, Quinte Health Care finds

By Mark Hodgins [1]

BELLEVILLE – Getting to the hospital is a big concern for people in Quinte Health Care [2]‘s region, according to the results of a recent survey done by the organization.

The survey was done earlier this fall and asked respondents for their input regarding the impending changes [3] coming to QHC. The organization will be cutting 84 jobs in an effort to make up an $11.5 million deficit in its funding.

One of the questions asked respondents what concerned them most about the changes. The top three responses were transportation to and from  hospitals, increased wait times and quality of care.

“This is a reoccurring theme, and won’t be a surprise to anyone in this room,” Susan Rowe, QHC’s communications director, told the board of directors at its Nov. 24 meeting.

According to Rowe, older people are most concerned with transportation. Rowe said many seniors rely on family to get to and from appointments, and often don’t have a way to visit loved ones in the hospital if they do not live close by.

The high cost of other forms of travel – taxis, in particular – was brought up as well.

Rowe did preface these observations by saying that most of this concern is based on people’s worries of what could happen in the future, such as the closure of one of QHC’s hospitals. That, however, likely won’t be happening any time soon.