SHANDRO MUST TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR MASS CANCELLATION OF SURGERIES, UNSAFE SITUATION AT ROYAL ALEXANDRA HOSPITAL
EDMONTON – UCP Health Minister Tyler Shandro must appear publicly today and accept responsibility for the mass cancellation of orthopedic surgeries at the Royal Alexandra Hospital, a situation described by a senior doctor as “NOT safe.”
On Monday, AHS confirmed that four operating theatres will be closed for three days due to critical staffing shortages, cancelling surgeries for 53 Albertans. In an email obtained by the media, the hospital’s chief of orthopedics, Dr. Paulose Paul, told colleagues that a single junior physician will be responsible for 120 patients on Wednesday night.
“This is a situation which, I think you will all agree, is NOT safe,” wrote Dr. Paul.
“In a major Alberta hospital in our capital city, four operating rooms have been shut down for three days because the hospital has run out of doctors,” said David Shepherd, NDP Critic for Health. “This is where Jason Kenney, Tyler Shandro, and the UCP have brought us to.”
“It’s simply unacceptable that patients and frontline healthcare workers are being put into unsafe situations in Alberta hospitals.”
According to the AHS Facility Status website, which the NDP Opposition called for, there are 163 beds closed in hospitals across the province. University of Alberta Hospital in Edmonton has closed some operating theatres. Surgeries are delayed at the Northern Lights Regional Health Centre in Fort McMurray. Obstetric services have been cut in Whitecourt, Barrhead and Sundre. The emergency room is closed two days a week in Elk Point. In Hardisty, the emergency room closed in April and isn’t slated to reopen until October.
“What AHS is not reporting is how many other hospitals are balancing on the brink of an unsafe situation and working their nurses and doctors and frontline healthcare workers further into exhaustion,” Shepherd said.
“These critical staffing shortages are the direct result of the Kenney’s government’s botched handling of the pandemic alongside his war with Alberta doctors, nurses, and frontline healthcare workers.
“I’m calling on Tyler Shandro to appear in public today and take responsibility for the situation at the Royal Alex and across Alberta.”