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Gerrard: Health Care Needs a Patient-Focused Budget

April 17, 2012 3:57 PM | News

Liberal leader Jon Gerrard (CHRISD.CA FILE)

The Liberal Party of Manitoba says the province cannot balance the budget by 2014 as planned.

Leader Jon Gerrard was quick to criticize the 2012 budget on Tuesday, saying Manitobans are losing trust in the NDP after a crippling deficit and a failure to fulfill election promises.

Gerrard says the plan to eliminate six of Manitoba’s 11 regional health authorities within three years could worsen local issues. Gerrard points out the shaky merger of Marquette and South Westman RHAs in 2002 to become Assiniboine.

“The province should reimburse hospitals based on what they actually do, rather than simply providing them with huge dollops of dollars through their global budgets, no matter what,” Gerrard said. “In BC, patient-based funding is already breathing new life into hospitals. The number of procedures is up, waiting lists are down, and hospital emergency departments covered by the program are processing patients as never before.”