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  • News
  • August 22, 2016

Ontario Investing $1.2 million in York Region to Improve Care in Emergency Rooms

Province Funding Dedicated Nursing Hours to Reduce Emergency Wait Times

MPP Michael Chan is pleased to announce that Ontario is providing $1,201,601 to help patients receive quicker access to care in hospital emergency rooms in York Region.

Dedicated nurses will work exclusively on receiving low-acuity patients from ambulances, which will allow paramedics to respond to other 9-1-1 calls in the community rather than waiting in the emergency room.  Patients arriving at hospitals by ambulance with life-threatening conditions continue to be given priority by hospital staff.

“This strategic investment is a great example of our government’s comprehensive plan to put patients first and deliver faster, more efficient care.  Supporting our hospitals and the dedicated, hard-working nurses who make such a difference will improve the emergency room experience and help to continue the transformation of the health care system in Ontario that we value so highly.”
— Michael Chan, M.P.P., Markham-Unionville

The province will provide funding to 20 municipalities across Ontario for 300,000 dedicated emergency room nursing hours at 49 hospitals this year.

Municipalities who have received funding for these dedicated emergency room nurses have already reported seeing improvements in delays and emergency room wait times.

Investing in this initiative is part of the government's plan to build a better Ontario through its Patients First: Action Plan for Health Care, which provides patients with faster access to the right care, better home and community care, the information they need to live healthy, and a health care system that is sustainable for generations to come.


“I'm pleased that we can continue to invest in this initiative at hospitals across the province. Making these comprehensive investments ensures that the most effective practices are in place so we can continue to put the needs of our patients first.  Thanks to the hard work of these dedicated emergency room nurses, we have seen a reduction in ambulance offload delays at hospitals.”
— Dr. Eric Hoskins, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care

“The Regional Municipality of York is one of the fastest growing communities in Canada. Research is showing demand for paramedic services continues to grow at a faster rate than population growth, with transport demand expected to increase by 48 per cent from 2011 to 2021. In an emergency situation every second counts and this funding to support dedicated nursing staff will further reduce off-load delays and enable paramedics to get to other emergency situations faster.”
Wayne Emmerson, Chair and CEO, The Regional Municipality of York

“This is an important investment in our local hospital system that advances Central LHIN goals on improving access to care in the most appropriate setting.  Coordinating with all of our hospital partners, we’re working together to advance the Emergency Care system.”
Kim Baker, CEO, Central LHIN


  • The dedicated offload nurses initiative was created in 2008-2009 to reduce ambulance offload times by providing municipalities with funding for dedicated nurses to offload patients in hospital emergency rooms.
  • Ontario’s health care budget has increased from $47.6 billion in 2012-13 to a total of $51.8 billion in 2016-17.
  • This year’s $51.8 billion investment in health care is a 2.1 per cent increase over last year – greater than the rate of inflation.

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