CALGARY, AB (June 19, 2013): With recent reversals by AHS to restore three home care contracts in Edmonton, Wildrose Health Critic Heather Forsyth is today calling on palliative and home care organizations in Calgary to speak out on recent changes and ensure their voices are heard.
AHS announced yesterday that Abby Road Housing Co-operative, Artspace Housing Co-operative and Creekside Support Services will be allowed to continue to run operations while the health authority continues down its misguided path to consolidate health services. AHS CEO Chris Eagle said that one of the reasons for the reversal is that AHS, “should have paid more attention to the needs of some individual Albertans.” Forsyth said that this shows that the willingness by the home care operators to speak out against and raise the concerns of patients in a public forum can make positive changes that directly benefit Alberta’s health care system. “I encourage all Calgarians impacted by decisions to centralize home care services and reduce palliative care services to speak out and reach out to government MLAs, members of the opposition and the media to get their message out,” Forsyth said. “We’ve known from the beginning that reducing palliative care and centralizing home care services means taking away providers from patients and means less choice in the system and if we work together we can push AHS and the government to reverse changes for Calgarians too.” Currently, three local home care agencies are losing contracts with AHS in Calgary, one of which is Calgary Family Services, which has been operating in the city for over 100 years. With the government showing a willingness to back down from poor decision making, Forsyth said that home care providers should not have to feel worried about the repercussions of speaking out. “We are beginning to chip away at a tired and out-of-touch government and starting to get results,” Forsyth said. “Together, we can ensure that decisions by AHS and the PC government no longer need to have the final say.”