Since my January MLA report to Elmwood residents on the diagnostic lab closures across the city, over 1,000 northeast Winnipeg residents have responded to my survey and/or signed my petition to voice their strong opposition to these closures.
Every day, more and more northeast Winnipeg residents are finding out the hard way that their usual diagnostic blood and fluid testing lab locations are closed. This is the result of the closure of 21 diagnostic lab locations, including Concordia Community Clinic’s Dynacare Lab, and a monopoly consolidation of services at four super-sites across the City.
The simple diagnostic blood tests and urine samples that used to be done when you visited your doctor’s office now require a separate visit to a reduced number of lab locations. Gone is the convenience and efficiency of walking a few feet with your lab requisition form to get your test done in the doctor’s office, a practice that made sense to doctors and patients.
We need to restore these diagnostic medical services, not make life easier for private blood lab companies.
Elmwood residents and their doctors know these lab closures will result in fewer tests being done and delays in testing. They know this will increase health-care costs and result in poorer patient outcomes.
Residents, many of whom are elderly and vulnerable, have reported their experiences with longer lineups and longer wait times for services in addition to the obvious travel challenges.
Please take a moment to visit my web site at www.yourelmwood.com. As you will see there, I have been making the premier, his ministers, and local government MLAs aware that these lab location closures are opposed by Elmwood residents.
As you can see from residents’ comments on my website, they know first-hand the elderly and disabled are paying a heavy price, especially those without vehicles who need to arrange for rides. Working people with doctors’ appointments must now take time off work to make a second lab appointment. These changes are adding to the daily stress of Manitobans who value the convenience and efficiency of their health care system when they can give their samples at the time of their doctor’s visit.
If you have any questions, please contact me by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org or calling my office at 204-415-1122.
Elmwood constituency report
Jim Maloway is the NDP MLA for Elmwood.