Dr. Douglas Mark, Interim President of DoctorsOntario (DO), today announced that his organization will be hosting a job fair on Saturday, September 26, 2015, as a result of the Liberal Government imposing a deal on doctors earlier this year. Dr. Mark explained that the job fair, which will feature physician recruiters from the United States and elsewhere, is being organized in order to help doctors find work in jurisdictions friendlier than Ontario. He emphasized that the event is not expected to put the health of anyone at risk, occurring as it does on a Saturday, nor should it impede patients from getting the care they need in as timely a manner as possible.
"For the past several months, Ontario's doctors have tried to reason with the Liberal Government," Dr. Mark said. "Unfortunately, Premier Wynne and her Government have chosen to ignore us and move forward with their irresponsible and reckless cuts to our healthcare system. As a result, they've left us with little choice but to set up this job fair and advise our members to start looking out for their own future for a change.”
In addition to speaking with physician recruiters, doctors will also be able to consult with financial advisors and those specializing in retirement planning. Dr. Mark explained that this is because as many as 20% of Ontario's 28,000 physicians are now seriously considering retiring within the next two to three years, as a result of the Liberals imposing another 2.65% in cuts last February. Should that happen, it would be catastrophic for our healthcare system, especially considering that there are still 900,000 Ontarians without a family doctor, and that wait times to see a specialist continue to grow.
"Ontario's doctors are particularly disappointed in Health Minister Hoskins, who, as a family doctor, knows only too well the dangers of trying to balance the budget on the backs of our patients," Dr. Mark said. "By allowing the Premier to cut five hundred and eighty million dollars from the healthcare budget, we believe Dr. Hoskins has failed to do his duty as Health Minister—namely, advocate on behalf of our patients and ensure that precious healthcare dollars aren't be siphoned off to pay for previous Government boondoggles and future 'pie-in-the-sky' infrastructure projects."
To make matters worse, as many as half of Ontario's physicians are now seriously considering closing their practices for the month of March, starting in 2016, in order to avoid being victimized by Government clawbacks. Most elective surgeries will also, in all probability, have to be cancelled—possibly as early as next January—for much the same reason, according to Dr. Mark. Needless to say, this would create a backlog the likes of which we've never seen in this province, putting patients at risk and greatly inconveniencing caregivers and other family members.
“We urge Premier Wynne and her Government to go back to the table immediately and negotiate a real deal with the doctors of Ontario," Dr. Mark said. "It's not too late to undo the damage the Liberals have done by imposing a deal on the medical profession, which only serves to make doctors scapegoats for the eHealth and Ornge fiascos, while at the same time rationing healthcare services. Doctors deserve better than this, and so do our patients."
Further details about the job fair will be posted on the DoctorsOntario website later this month.