Backlash Over Planned OB Closure (Gallery)

The planned closure of the obstetrics ward at Leamington District Memorial Hospital brings many residents to a public forum on October 29, 2014. (Photo by Ricardo Veneza)

The first two public engagement forums hosted by the Leamington District Memorial Hospital show there is plenty of anger over the planned closure of the obstetrics ward.

Katherine Schmitt from Kingsville left the two-hour session Wednesday night feeling pessimistic about the future of the OB program in Leamington.

“A little deafeated,” says Schmitt. “I feel like the board made their decision and the [Erie-St. Clair] LHIN knows what they’re going to say. The funding is just not there. It’s going to be a ‘no’ but they haven’t officially said ‘no’ yet so, I kind of feel like it’s just too late.”

Terry Shields, CEO of the Leamington hospital, says no one wants to see the Obstetrics/Gynecology ward go.

“I really appreciate all the comments that people made; they were very respectful, very passionate about the hospital,” says Shields. “It’s very much the same as the board of directors. They share that same type of passion, but we have a responsibility to make sure that we balance the books.”

The OB program is set to be phased out in Leamington by March 31, 2015 pending approval from the Erie-St. Clair LHIN.