Coldstream residents are being encouraged to rally behind their hospital.
A petition demanding the provincial government develop two shelled-in floors at Vernon Jubilee Hospital into acute care beds is available at the municipal office.
“We need to keep up the pressure,” said Coun. Maria Besso.
VJH is funded for 148 acute care beds but on average, there are 165 patients daily. A lack of beds has led to patients being placed in hallways and surgeries have been cancelled.
The Ministry of Health has acknowledged the conditions at VJH but no commitment towards funding has been made.
However, Besso says it’s time for the government to listen to residents of Coldstream and the North Okanagan.
“The top priority for taxpayers’ funding is the shelled-in floors at the hospital,” she 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.
Besso, as well as other Coldstream residents, participated in a recent rally outside of the hospital.
“When people get together and make their voice heard, it makes a difference,” she said.
Besides a hard-cop petition, there is also a petition available online at www.petitiononlinecanada.com/petition/vjh-purple-ribbon-campaign-petition/136.