The Manitoba NDP is promising to reopen emergency rooms that were shuttered at three Winnipeg hospitals if they form government in the upcoming election.
That plan will start with building a new ER at the Victoria Hospital to meet the needs of south Winnipeg’s growing population, NDP Leader Wab Kinew said at a news conference on Monday.
Afterward, the New Democrats would reopen ERs at Seven Oaks General Hospital and Concordia Hospital, Kinew said.
“This is a common-sense, smart and incremental program that we are committing to today,” he said outside Winnipeg’s St. Boniface Hospital.
The Opposition party’s latest election promise would undo what were controversial efforts that began in 2017 to cut wait times and find inefficiencies in Winnipeg’s health-care system, which included closing the three Winnipeg ERs. All three currently operate as 24/7 urgent care centres.
Wait times at Winnipeg emergency departments and urgent care centres haven’t dropped, however. The median wait for the past year has been 2.5 hours, well above the 1.5 hours that was reported before the first of three emergency departments was closed.