The tragic toll the COVID-19 virus is having on Northwood has left many Nova Scotians with questions and seeking solutions.
Today, Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Houston, called for the Standing Committee on Health to be reconvened immediately to enable elected officials and health professionals to come together to provide answers and share ideas on how to protect our most at risk, and to prevent a similar mass spread of COVID-19 within a long-term care facility.
“COVID-19 has caused hardship for many Nova Scotians, but none more than our vulnerable seniors who live in long-term care facilities,” said Houston. “Residents and frontline professionals at Northwood must be experiencing an incredible range of emotions and family members are worried about their parents and grandparents. As elected officials we need to ensure that those Nova Scotians have answers.”
The letter sent from Houston to the Chair of the Health Committee requests that Public Health officials, nurses, caregivers, other healthcare professionals and administration at Northwood be among the witnesses asked to come forward to discuss procedures, identify potential risks, and safeguards that could be implemented immediately and should have been implemented sooner.
Houston says that in the spirit of collaboration, elected officials from all parties need to come together to find solutions, as health officials warn that there may be multiple waves of the COVID-19 virus.
On March 23, the PC Caucus called for an All-Party committee to discuss ways in which elected officials could work together to support Nova Scotians during COVID-19. The government did not respond to that letter.
“Now more than ever, it is the responsibility of elected officials to work together to provide health care workers and administrators the tools they need to protect themselves and our most vulnerable populations and prevent future waves of this virus from taking hold in long-term care facilities,” said Houston. “We owe it to everyone living and working in these facilities to work to prevent such an outbreak from happening again.”
The PCs believe the Health Committee is the most appropriate venue because it can reconvene virtually quickly and allows for health professionals to have a platform to share their ideas and experiences in a public setting.