As we approach the peak of the holiday season I wanted to extend greetings to all members of the NHS team, to our partners and colleagues in the community, and to all those we serve. I hope you have safe and happy celebrations with your friends and family.
In particular our staff, volunteers and physicians at all NHS sites who will work through the holidays deserve special recognition. I believe I speak for all of us in saying we are deeply grateful for their commitment at this time of year.
We are also mindful of those in our community who are ill or who have lost loved ones recently. This can be a very difficult time of the year for many, and as healthcare providers we often share difficult times with you.
My work continues as Supervisor and is now moving from a data gathering phase to an analysis phase. I continue to have many meetings with staff and leadership at NHS, and also meetings with leadership from within our communities, and with other concerned citizens. I have also received over 600 emails, all of which have been read and, as appropriate, answered. I am nearing the point that I feel I have a much clearer picture of the situation concerning Niagara Health System.
The next steps in my process will be the most challenging. Working with NHS Executives and Medical leadership, and taking into account the public’s feedback, I will have developed options for the realignment of hospital services and of the governance and leadership of the hospital by the spring. As I have said in the past, all options are on the table, and I will consider all options carefully before bringing forward what I feel are the most viable ones to the community.
In this model I hope that the broadest community consultation can take place. I hope everyone will feel they’ve had a chance to express comments and concerns on the options before the consultation is over. I know that in the end we won’t be able to satisfy everyone, but I do hope we can all approach this difficult task in the spirit of compromise and collaboration, and the best interests of our region as a whole.
In closing I also feel I would be remiss in not acknowledging the outcome of the inquest concerning the tragic death of Reilly Anzovino. I know you will join me in extending our deepest sympathies to Reilly’s family as I know this must be a very difficult time for them. I am also grateful to the representatives from NHS who participated in the inquest, and to the jurors and coroner for their difficult work. We will be examining the recommendations of the inquest closely and will work with our partners in the New Year on a plan to address them.
Again I wish you a peaceful holiday, and salute the great work of the NHS team.