MHA concerned about cancelling of patient transportation contract

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Yvonne Jones. — Telegram file photo

Liberal Cartwright-L'Anse au Clair MHA Yvonne Jones says she's concerned and dismayed after hearing that Labrador-Grenfell Health has cancelled its contract to provide ground transportation service from the airport to the hospital in St. Anthony.

Jones said in a news release, on March 18, patients travelling from Labrador to the hospital in St. Anthony by airplane will have to pay for their own costs to get from the airport to the hospital.

The announcement from Labrador-Grenfell Health means the contract, which has been in place for years, to provide a way for patients to get from the airport to the hospital in St. Anthony will be cancelled.

 “Instead of relying on the health authority to provide a way to get to the hospital, sick patients and their families will now have to pay out of their own pockets and make a claim for reimbursement,” said Jones. “Danny’s Air Bus has been carrying, patients, staff and freight to the hospital in St. Anthony under an arrangement with the hospital and regional health authority.”

Labrador-Grenfell Health said Wednesday, "clients will no longer be provided with bus passes for transportation between St. Anthony Airport and Charles S. Curtis Memorial Hospital."

Jones said there are very few options for patients looking to cover the distance involved in travelling from the airport to the hospital in St. Anthony and people who depend on Danny’s Air Bus will be greatly disadvantaged by the cancellation of the service.

“The most vulnerable in our society, seniors and families on low fixed income will be the most affected as a result of this decision by Labrador-Grenfell Health,” Jones added.

The MHA says she would like to see Labrador-Grenfell Health reverse its decision to ease the burden on patients, many of whom are seniors, who depend on the bus service to get to the hospital in St. Anthony.

The executive of the Combined Councils of Labrador says it was also shocked to learn that Labrador Grenfell Health Authority will not be renewing its contact with Danny’s Airbus that provide road transportation to patients travelling from Coastal Labrador to the hospital in St Anthony.  

“This action by Labrador Grenfell Health will have a negative impact on patients traveling for medical attention because many people will not have the resources to access transportation to the hospital,” the combined councils said in a news release.

“Many people are not in the position to rent a vehicle or do not have licenses to drive. With very few options for transportation available in the St Anthony area, this action will cause difficulty for patients traveling for medical attention.”


Organizations: Labrador-Grenfell Health

Geographic location: St. Anthony, Labrador

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Recent comments

  • huh?
    February 23, 2013 - 08:23

    What do they mean, a taxi from their homes to the airport & the airport to the hospital or everything, including the flight to the hospital? I'm a taxpayer too & to make sick people pay for this type of flight to seek medical treatment is unacceptable. This is a new low & very disturbing. Are they going to let people die because they're poor or elderly? Just one salary from a lucrative political appointment would pay for our sick & elderly to seek medical treatment. I hope the new government, next election, will remember who's making these hairbrained decisions & send them packing along with Dunderdale & cronies. It's their treatment of citizens that are imboldening others to be so cold hearted & cruel to ordinary citizens.

  • Ben
    February 23, 2013 - 08:20

    Where else in the province, or country does this happen? If I have to go for an appointment in St Johns I don't think Eatern Health is going to have a bus or a taxi waiting for me. If its an ambulance case, that's different but as for regular transportation it's scandalous that it was ever done! People...govt can't, or should not pay for everything!

    • Valerie
      February 26, 2013 - 14:13

      You know nothing, and you diffidently don't know Labrador!

  • Amazed
    February 22, 2013 - 20:55

    Donate your salary... That will cover quite a few trips

  • be real
    February 22, 2013 - 13:02

    My God in heaven please get our gove't people on the right track,HEALTH CARE IN ANY FORM is the only place where you DO NOT CUT anytime and anyplace,.Please, don't care if you work or not when it comes to peoples lives it should be first on the list to keep,check your sheets again.

    • Re-read
      February 22, 2013 - 20:58

      This is Labrador Grenfell Health making the cut...

  • Joe Blow
    February 22, 2013 - 10:08

    Yvonne don't be too upset the welfare people will still have their way paid for by the government, it's only the working people who will have to pay and we have been paying all our lives for those people

    • Your boss
      February 22, 2013 - 11:19

      Hey, Joe, get back to work... on second thought, you're fired. Now you get everything paid for by the government. Except that you don't.

    • joe blow
      February 22, 2013 - 18:48

      Thanks boss after 40 years working I need the break