More Local Lab Service Cuts

It seems that the government is now using changes in the OHIP fee schedule give more work to the for-profit laboratory corporations.  This reduction in patient access is documented by Rita Marshall in the June 22 edition of the Mitchell Advocate.  Mitchell is a town in the Municipality of West Perth near Stratford Ontario.

Don’t like the fact that Mitchell Family Doctors send patients out-of-town for blood work now? Blame the province, says the office.

“Blood work is an important diagnostic tool and we were pleased to provide that service to our patients so they did not have to leave our community,” wrote office manager Sherry Kraemer in an email.

“It is unfortunate the government does not see value in that.”

The practice stopped performing blood work on patients about three weeks ago after learning about funding changes to the OHIP Schedule of Benefits effective April 1, 2012. Kraemer noted that the province unilaterally imposed the cuts.

“It’s just no longer feasible for us to offer that service,” Kraemer said in a phone interview. “The doctors are upset about it as well but it just seems to be the direction that the government is heading.

“It wasn’t an easy decision and I don’t think anyone’s thrilled about it, but it is what it is.”

Patients who require blood work must now go out-of-town, either to Lifelabs at Stratford’s Jenny Trout Centre or Stratford General Hospital, Seaforth Community Hospital or Clinton Public Hospital.

Kraemer said the waits at Lifelabs may be shorter if patients book an appointment online. Patients can book an appointment through www.lifelabs.com.

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Explore posts in the same categories: Ontario - Local Lab Issues, Ontario Government Policy

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