Nearly one year since the Pallister government launched an all out attack on Manitoba’s healthcare system, wait times for emergency rooms have gotten worse.
This week Pallister released data on wait times for Winnipeg emergency rooms from the month of August. That release showed wait times in emergency departments across the city have increased since last fall.
According to the government’s own historical records, at this time last year the median time that a person would wait in the ER was 1.35 hours. In August 2018 the median time was 1.52 hours. That’s a 12.5% increase in wait times in just one year. This is unacceptable.
To make matters worse, the Pallister government publicly claimed that they had reduced wait times by 8.5% since last year. They have refused to provide evidence for this figure. Either the government’s reporting is incorrect, or Pallister and his Minister of Health are deliberately misrepresenting the numbers to justify their healthcare cuts.
Manitoba families are watching Pallister close emergency rooms, delete nurses and cut services like physiotherapy. The wait times number make it clear that this rushed political plan isn’t about improving healthcare for regular families at all. It’s about cutting costs and allowing Pallister to meet his own political promises.
- Wab Kinew