Saturday, August 4, 2012


Seniors Scene

Huge Salaries Burden Entire System

Five reasons why closure of the Sub-Acute Care Unit at CGH is just plain wrong

Submitted by Myrtle Macdonald, Chilliwack


applaud articles in the media and efforts by our Mayor to resist the closure of the Sub-Acute unit on fifth floor Chilliwack General Hospital. I add some very important reasons why this decision is very wrong.


1. There are several excellent Physiotherapists and Occupational Therapists on their staff. If the unit must be closed I want to see a promise that these skilled people will all be transferred to the staff of Home Care.

2. Physiotherapists and Occupational Therapists give treatments at least twice a day, to all patients, on the Sub-Acute unit. At least 20 people benefit daily. Thousands have recovered remarkably well. My brother and sister have been patients several times on this unit and the previous unit, that was also on fifth floor. My sister was there for serious fractures that were slow healing, and my brother after strokes. I saw many other people receive a variety of excellent rehabilitative treatments. Patient satisfaction was remarkable. The lack of turnover of staff indicates that they had job satisfaction.

3. Are there health care funds to take 10 or 20 people to Abbotsford daily for these treatments? Would elderly and disabled people have the stamina, time and funds to travel daily to Abbotsford? It would take half a day or more to get there and back - for a 20 minute treatment. Instead of two or three kinds of treatments a day they would get one. Instead of treatments twice a day, they would have to make do with treatments once a week. Recovery of full function would be very much less likely.

4. Are there 20 or 30 extra beds on a comparable unit in Abbotsford, for Chilliwack people who have had strokes or serious fractures, needing treatment for two weeks or two months each?

5. Home care staffing is already minimal. One person living alone, needing help with his/her bath, gets one bath a week. If there are two people in the same apartment there can be two visits a week. A caring Caregiver then gives both people a bath twice a week. That happened with my mother and sister.

If the government must stretch their health care funding, then let them cut back all the salaries that are more than $100,000 per year. No CEO, Administrator or Manager needs more than that. Most of the disabled and elderly exist on $10,000 to $20,000 per year. The Advisory Board members don't need remuneration. They already have more than adequate incomes. Let them be true Volunteers, just as most retired people are, donating time and skill for many valuable causes.



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