Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently asked questions regarding difficult decisions on clinical services

Q: Why is Cornwall Community Hospital closing beds, and reducing operating room volumes?

A: Over the past four years the hospital has made very significant improvements in efficiencies. The hospital’s performance has been benchmarked and despite these efforts, CCH is projecting an 8.0M dollar deficit for 2009/2010. An external 3rd party review revealed that CCH is an efficient hospital and requires a funding adjustment in order to maintain required service levels.

Reduction in operating room volumes and the closure of 8 beds, which were previously opened to address extra volume, will save the hospital $1.8M dollars. These difficult decisions regarding clinical services will bring us closer to a balanced position.

Unfortunately, health care is not immune to the economic downturn. Like many hospitals, part of our deficit is due to the gap between funding (2%) and inflationary expenditures (3.5%).

Q: Hospitals in Ontario are required to balance their budgets. Why does CCH have a deficit?

A: The board and administration at CCH have been meeting with the Champlain LHIN officials over the past two years to resolve this situation. It was extremely important to us that the appropriate funding be determined and in place before service reductions be implemented. The 3rd Party Review does verify the need for a significant funding adjustment of 6.6 M dollars.

Q: Will these cuts mean the hospital’s budget is balanced?

A: No, but it will bring us closer to a balanced position. These closures and reductions will reduce our deficit by $2.1 million. The funding adjustment from the LHIN/MOHTLC is required to address the remainder of the deificit.

Q: Why is the hospital cutting clinical services and nurses instead of cutting administrative costs like executive salaries?

A: Over the past two years, CCH has been reducing non direct patient care costs and finding more efficient ways to provide patient care. Despite a total savings of 4.46 million dollars with these initiatives, more savings are required.

CCH spends 7% of their funding on administration while the provincial average is over 10%. CCH is amongst one of the lowest regarding administration expenses to total budget in the province.

Q: Why is the hospital in a deficit when they are so busy?

A: Unlike a regular business, the Hospital is not funded on volumes. Increases in patient volumes means an increase in costs, it does not mean additional funding.

Q: What does this mean for the redevelopment project? Will project activities cease until the deficit is corrected?

A: The redevelopment project funding is separate from the hospital’s day to day operational budget. The project activities will continue.

Q: Do these reductions mean longer wait times?

A: We do not anticipate that these reductions will have a significant impact on our wait times.