MHC sites designated for development and funding of one bed hospice suites

MANITOULIN—Both hospital sites of the Manitoulin Health Centre (MHC) have been designated by the North East Local Health Integration Networks (NE LHIN) for the development and funding of one bed hospice suite per site.

“The Manitoulin Health Centre (MHC) was pleasantly surprised to learn that the NE-LHIN has decided to fund Northeast small hospital sites for the development of one bed hospice suites,” stated Derek Graham, chief executive officer of the MHC, after a board meeting last week. “This initiative has come about in response to the ministry’s plan to further expand access to this needed service across the province.”

Mr. Graham explained, “MHC will immediately receive one-time funding of $102,500 to develop the suites, and then operating funding in subsequent years ($105,000 per site) to aid in their operation.”

The direction from the NE-LHIN is to imbed the Little Current service in 2017-2018 and Mindemoya in 2018-2019. “The operations are to reflect the provincial community standards for hospice services, so as to provide an appropriate level of care even though the beds are to be hospital-based. The beds to be purposed for hospice will not be new beds for our sites, but rather will result from renovations of existing rooms.”

Mr. Graham also reported that the NE-LHIN has approved some of MHC’s project submissions, with dollars coming from the $20 million Small Hospital Transformation Fund. To date, funding support has been received for the Quality Integration Lead, Tele-Ophthamology and Non-Urgent Transportation.

“A one percent base funding increased has been approved for small hospitals, but there is a 10 percent holdback on this amount,” said Mr. Graham. “As a result, MHC will see an immediate amount of $123,000 added to base. The remaining 10 percent will be withheld by the NE-LHIN until a later date, pending finalization of 2015/2016 closing base reconciliation.”

As well, a memorandum of understanding for the Northeastern Ontario Laboratory (NEO-LAB) network of hospitals, an initiative under the leadership of MHC, has been signed by all 24 hospitals. The MOU outlines the principles under which further lab service development and hospital partnerships can be built.

Mr. Graham also noted, “Health Quality Ontario has asked MHC to co-present (in partnership with Noojmowin Teg) at their upcoming provincial fall quality forum, concerning the leadership experiences in creating the Manitoulin Health Collaborative. This will be a very positive opportunity to showcase the development of our local collaborative.”