NDP leader Adrian Dix speaks with the media about the need for beds at Vernon Jubilee Hospital Monday.

Dix demands VJH beds

The provincial government is being accused of consistently ignoring overcrowding at Vernon Jubilee Hospital.

NDP leader Adrian Dix stopped at VJH Monday to support the Purple Ribbon campaign, which is demanding more acute care beds.

“This community raised the issue in 2006. They raised it again in 2007, 2008 the same thing, 2009. It’s time for action,” he said.

“The issues haven’t been addressed for a long time because the Liberals take the Okanagan for granted. This will be one of the ridings that decides the election.”

Dix claims the government’s priorities are wrong.

“How does it make sense to cut taxes for large corporations but you can’t fund basic services?” he said.

“What have they been doing? They have been in government for 10 years.”

Dix is demanding that funds be directed towards opening up the two shelled-in floors in the new patient care tower that are designated for future beds.

“If every day, you’re at 161 or 162 (patients) in a hospital of 148, that’s not safe,” he said, adding that would be one of his first steps if he were to become premier.

“This isn’t just an answer of acute care. Government has failed in the area of community care.”

Dix says B.C. has the worst track record for health care spending in Canada.

“We spend 24 per cent less than Alberta and the consequences are being felt.”

Eric Foster, Vernon-Monashee MLA, defends the government’s actions and he insists the two floors will be constructed although there isn’t a set timeline.

“There have been a lot of discussions. We’re trying to figure out how we will pay for it,” he said.

It could cost about $10 million to develop each of the shelled-in floors for use by patients, and then $10 million each annually to operate the floors.

Foster took aim at Dix’s comments.

“It’s easy to make promises when you’re not the person writing the cheque,” said Foster, adding that the government faces financial pressures across B.C.

“Where does he plan to come up with the money? When the day comes that we can do it, we’ll do it.”

 

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Vernon Vipers waiting on playoff foe

BCHL: Snakes won’t play Victoria, but will play either Wenatchee or Salmon Arm

Star Quebecois pianist to take the stage in Vernon

Charles Richard-Hamelin will play on Feb. 29, with opening act by local Grade 11 student

West Kelowna Warriors edge Vernon Vipers 6-4

The teams meet again on Saturday, Feb. 22 at 6 p.m. for the final game of regular season

North Okanagan Knights take on Kelowna Chiefs in playoff preview

The teams will square off for last game of regular season, Round 1 of KIJHL playoffs

Enderby announces plans for $150K ParticipACTION prize money

The city was crowned Canada’s most active community in June 2019

HIGHLIGHTS: Day one and two at the 2020 BC Winter Games

Athletes had sunny – but cold – weather to work with in Fort St. John

B.C. money laundering inquiry to begin amid hopes for answers, accountability

Eby argued that most B.C. residents already know the previous government, at best, turned a blind eye

Blockades remain in place as Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs returning to B.C.

Hereditary Chief Woos said they are ready to engage in nation-to-nation talks with the B.C.

Dale family was prominent in Summerland’s past

Ruth Dale taught for many years

Tyler Toffoli scores twice, Canucks crush Bruins 9-3

Stecher, Miller each add three points for Vancouver

Zamboni driver, 42, earns NHL win over Maple Leafs

Emergency goalie called into action for Carolina Hurricanes

Governor general says multiple solutions needed for ‘complicated’ overdose issue

Julie Payette met at a fire hall with firefighters and police officers as well as politicians and health experts

Landlord ordered to pay $11K after harassing B.C. mom to move days after giving birth

Germaine Valdez was pressured to move just a few days after giving birth by C-section to her child

Heart attacks strike B.C. husband and wife just over one year apart

Courtenay couple share personal stories to bring awareness to heart month

Most Read