Medical staffing at Ashcroft Hospital is critical

A reader writes with concerns about understaffing at the hospital, and what happens if someone leaves.

Dear Editor,

I worked at the Ashcroft Hospital (now Ashcroft Health Site) for 30 years. I have watched it slowly deteriorate. The last big cut was the loss of all our acute care beds, and now the closed sign.

Thanks to the dedicated staff that are hanging in there and keeping us alive. The place is running on three-and-a-half registered nurses; X-ray and the lab have been cut to part-time. If any of them leave we are done. Who is going to come to Ashcroft for part-time work, or no emergency? It’s not all about doctors, it’s about the team.

If any of those employees leave and they can’t be replaced, what happens? Will Interior Health shut it down? Is that the plan? Lytton is open 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Chase 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.; 100 Mile has nine doctors. Lots of questions?

Not long ago there were cuts to long-term care, recreation, and service staff. The workload didn’t change; just fewer people, and less time to get it done. If the hospital closes, what happens to long-term care? Will they keep it open? It’s only 22 residents; they could be transferred in a snap.

It’s 12:30 p.m. on Friday, April 28 as I write this letter, and someone has come into the office. There has been a serious accident at the Ashcroft main highway junction. The hospital is closed!

Prayers.

Joyce Buckland

Ashcroft

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