Thursday, October 11, 2012

Khan confirms plan for private management of some services at Mt Hope

File: Fuad Khan: "For two weeks now patients have not been receiving full services at the hospital."
The North Central Regional Health Authority (NCRHA) is looking for private partners to manage services at the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex. 

In confirming that Health Minister Fuad Khan told the Guardian newspaper it's because of protest action by staff and suspected sabotage.

He said several pieces of equipment might have been tampered with, including a $3 million drill and two air conditioning units,  which stopped working simultaneously. "The board found it unusual that both units would go down at the same time," Khan told the paper.

On Tuesday, the NCRHA took out newspaper advertisements requesting expressions of interest from parties to enter into a public-private partnership to operate and manage 24 departments and services at the Mt Hope hospital.

Khan explained why. "For two weeks now patients have not been receiving full services at the hospital because of the union’s (the Public Services Association - PSA - protest action...Patients are being affected. People are coming in and signing in for work and then not going on to their departments,” Khan said. 

“Many of the radiographers are not reporting for duty and the support staff is not working,” he said, adding that several patients seeking X-Rays could not be treated Wednesday because of the protest action. 

“The union was asking the NCRHA to have certain people removed from certain positions and were unhappy that the NCRHA had removed others,” Khan said.
The minister said he agreed with the board's decision about outsourcing the management of the services, noting that other RHAs are not having a similar problem.

He explained that under the partnership arrangement staff at Mount Hope would be transferred to the people who take over the running the services. “We hope that PSA will apply to run these services,” Khan said. 

PSA president Watson Duke warned the Health Minister to rethink his position.
Duke told the Guardian, "If he thinks he has felt the fire, the heat he is feeling is only the smoke." 
Watson Duke: " will result in a total declaration of war from the PSA.”
The union boss added, "Anytime they move forward with this private partnership plan to disenfranchise workers, I will take him on fully...I can assure you that what he is doing will result in his removal from that ministry."

Duke said the NCRHA is owing workers for allowances to which they are entitled and charged that they RHA is "suspending workers left and right" instead of making workers permanent or offering contract positions.

He said that's what caused the problem and warned that if the privatization plan goes ahead "it will result in a total declaration of war from the PSA.”

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Jai & Sero

Jai & Sero

Our family at home in Toronto 2008

Our family at home in Toronto 2008
Amit, Heather, Fuzz, Aj, Jiv, Shiva, Rampa, Sero, Jai