While the management of the McGill University Health Center (MUHC) refuses to say publicly that the emergency department of the Lachine Hospital is operational 24/7, the doctors are getting impatient and demanding more transparency.
For more than four months, the MUHC has publicly hammered home the message that the Lachine Hospital emergency department is closed at night, from 10 p.m. to 8 a.m., when this is untrue. The local population in need of emergency care can come to the site at any time of the night.
The Association of General Practitioners of Montreal (AMOM) says it does not understand the stubbornness of management.
“Frankly, it’s not complicated to say: the medical staff are there, the emergency room is open, thank you, we are providing care to the population and that’s it! ” laments its president, the Dr Michael Vachon.
He explains that this ambiguity left hanging by management “creates an unbearable climate of uncertainty” on the ground. With a shortfall of 380 general practitioners on the island of Montreal, doctors are spoiled for choice and can easily go to work in another emergency room or do patient follow-ups in CHSLDs.
The hypothesis raised by several speakers casts doubt on the good faith of the MUHC in the matter of saving the Lachine Hospital.
The management had clearly mentioned its intention to transform the vocation of the community hospital to make it a center dedicated to the treatment of chronic diseases, less acute cases and offering palliative care. However, the strong mobilization of citizens, with the support of medical personnel and the political class, thwarted the project.
Last April, the management of the MUHC thus confirmed the maintenance of the community hospital status of the Lachine establishment.
Then, after fearing a lack of medical personnel, doctors rallied to meet the needs.
“Everyone has mobilized on the ground to keep it open and, honestly, we would like to see more transparency on the communications side of the MUHC,” reiterates Dr.r Vachon.
He praises his colleague head of the Montreal Regional Department of General Medicine (DRMG), Dr.D Arianne Murray, who “worked hard with the doctors on site to find the staff needed to maintain the 24/7 service,” he said.
“Despite all of this, MUHC communications continue to maintain false information,” complains the family doctor.
The Dr Michel Vachon appeals to the duty to render service to the French-speaking population of the West Island of Montreal. He wants people to know that they can get quality health care, close to home, anytime.
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