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Health staff concerned about job losses, rural neglect, says Nova Scotia report

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HALIFAX - A report on Nova Scotia's health system has fielded concerns about job losses and rural communities being neglected with the provincial government's plan to cut the number of health boards to two from 10.

Health Minister Leo Glavine sought feedback from those in the health-care sector about the proposal, which would see one provincial health board and another for the IWK Health Centre in Halifax as of April 1.

The report says some health-care workers expressed anxiety about losing employment or having their jobs relocated, and fears also surfaced about a centralized approach that could see urban areas favoured over rural.

Glavine says the insights offered by health-care staff and volunteers will guide the work of a transition team responsible for recommending a new structure for the amalgamated health authorities.

He took part in a tour visiting each health authority in the province prior to the report's release.

The Liberal government says its plan to cut the number of health boards would result in savings, but the opposition NDP have disputed that, saying it would be more costly in the long run.

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