Queen’s Park - During question period, Algoma-Manitoulin MPP, Michael Mantha, asked the Liberal premier why the government continues to neglect the unique needs of northern Ontario communities after discovering a low-income constituent suffering from chronic pain is being forced to travel almost seventy kilometres to an emergency room, three times a week, just to refill his required prescription medication, as a result of losing his family doctor in Goulais River.
“Stephen no longer has a family doctor,” explained Mantha. “He receives ODSP and is struggling to pay for his travels to the Sault. He has been on a waitlist for a new family doctor but there is a lack of doctors and other medical services in Northern Ontario.”
Mantha explained that HealthCare Connect and CCAC can’t prioritize him higher on a waitlist and the Sault Ste. Marie area hospital won’t accommodate Stephen because he has to go through the emergency room and see a new doctor each time.
“Steven’s quality of life has drastically shifted since losing his family doctor, as he can’t get out of the house some days due to so much chronic pain,” explained Mantha. “This happens all across my riding. People do not have access to family physicians and nurse practitioners.”
“How is this government going to ensure that people in northern Ontario have access to primary care?”