OHA Calls for Comprehensive Capacity Planning: Hospital Sector Facing Increasing Service Pressures in 2014-15

TORONTO, Jan. 25, 2014 /CNW/ - Today, Ontario Hospital Association (OHA) President and CEO Anthony Dale released the following statement regarding the 2014 Ontario Pre-Budget Consultations:

"Ontario's hospital leaders are committed to supporting the Province's balanced budget objective, but recognize that even with aggressive efficiency improvements — over and above what hospitals typically achieve on an annual basis — Ontario's health care system is facing significant challenges.

Ontario's hospitals are already among the most efficient in Canada. In 2013, the Government of Ontario would have had to spend an additional $3.6 billion dollars on hospitals in order to meet the level spent in other provinces. The dividend allows greater investment in other areas of health care. And, with the exception of small hospitals, Ontario's hospitals have also received 0% increases in base operating funding in the 2012-13 and 2013-14 fiscal years.

The OHA is calling on the government to create a comprehensive, health-system capacity plan. We believe that such a plan is vital to meeting Ontario's health system challenges, now and in the future.

Capacity planning includes activities such as forecasting and benchmarking the number of different types of beds or services in hospitals or long-term care and the number of assisted living spaces, home care hours, primary care services, mental health services — to name a few areas — required to meet the needs of different populations.

A comprehensive capacity plan would drive sound decision-making regarding where care should be provided, who should provide it, and how it should be funded. We need to develop a provincial process for forecasting the necessary breadth and mix of services across the different health care sectors.

The ability to make strategic investments for both the short- and long-term is a key success factor in transforming the health system.

To view a copy of the OHA's full submission to the Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs, visit www.oha.com.

SOURCE Ontario Hospital Association

For further information:

Amy Clark, OHA Public Affairs, 416-205-1433 or aclark@ohoa.com