Union calling for more beds at CCH

Nick Seebruch

Published on March 10, 2017
Cornwall Community Hospital (CCH)
Submitted photo

CORNWALL, Ontario - The Ontario Council of Hospital Unions (OCHU) says that the Cornwall Community Hospital needs to add more staffed and funded beds.

The OCHU is saying that the hospital should be adding at least 17 staffed beds to deal with a chronic overcrowding problem.

"Ontario has the fewest number of hospital beds to population ratio of any province in Canada," the OCHU said in a statement. "The call in Cornwall is part of a push for increased funding for hospitals in the upcoming provincial budget."

In January, the hospital announced that it was at 138 percent capacity and asked citizens to avoid going to the Emergency Room unless it was absolutely necessary.

Since then, the lowest level of occupancy the hospital has seen is 107 percent.

“Cornwall hospital is fortunate to have staff working extra hours and shifts to ensure the patient’s needs are met, but the strain on our financial and human resources is impactful,” said Vice President of Patient Services and Chief Nursing Officer, Heather Arthur in an interview with Seaway News in February.

In January, the hospital attributed the reason for the increase in occupancy to high rates of the flu and stomach flu in the area at the time.