The Saskatchewan NDP says they have come up with a plan that will protect rural health in the province. Friday, NDP Leader Ryan Meili says it’s time for a government that takes rural health care seriously. Meili committed to repairing what he called years of Sask. Party under funding of rural health care, which he says has led to service disruptions, closed emergency rooms, and greater stress for rural families and seniors.
Meili said his party has 5 goals for rural health care. This plan Includes reopening rural emergency rooms and keeping existing acute care centres open. An investment of 10 million for short staffing and recruitment challenges. Investing in rural health infrastructure as part of the NDP’s capital plan to fix rural health care facilities. Convening a panel of rural municipal, health care, First Nations and Métis leaders to advise on improving access to health care in rural areas, and to work on an rural training program to recruit and retain young people from rural Saskatchewan in health care careers.
Meili, says the NDP believes that wherever you live in Saskatchewan, residents have the right to access health care, and just because someone lives in rural Saskatchewan, doesn’t mean their quality of health care should be less. He suggests in the last 10 years the state of rural health care has only gotten worse, saying in the last 5 years, Saskatchewan is the only province in Canada that has seen the number of rural doctors decline. Meili then criticized Premier Scott Moe for closing 12 rural Saskatchewan emergency rooms during the middle of the pandemic. 3 of which he says still remain closed.
Meili says the Sask. Party has taken rural Saskatchewan for granted for too long. He adds if granted the honour of serving in government this October, an NDP government will make the investments needed to improve rural health care.