Canada’s Ontario Government has committed to investing C$330m (around $250m) annually in paediatric health care across the province.
This investment is said to be part of the Make Kids Count campaign, led by a coalition of children’s hospitals, including Hamilton Health Sciences’ McMaster Children’s Hospital (MCH).
It aims to expand children’s health services, covering acute care, surgery, developmental care, rehabilitation, and mental health.
Part of the funding is expected to be allocated to Hamilton Health Sciences’ Same Day Overnight (SDO) unit at MCH.
The SDO unit is designed for patients who require overnight care after surgery but don’t need full hospital admission.
Previously, children needing overnight monitoring were admitted to hospitals, leading to potential delays in surgeries due to bed unavailability.
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The SDO unit minimises this risk and is said to ensure prompt care for paediatric patients.
Comprising various health organisations, the Children’s Health Coalition advocated for this investment highlighting the negative impact of the pandemic on children’s health and the need for immediate and significant funding in the children’s health care system.
The funding will enable children’s hospitals and community-based providers to expand services, reduce wait times for surgeries and procedures, and improve access to diagnostic imaging, mental health treatment, child development, and rehabilitation services.
It aims to better meet the needs of Ontario’s nearly three million children and their families.