NDP wants to see hyperbaric chamber plan

The NDP is calling for information about where the hyperbaric chamber will be located more than two weeks after the Sask. Party flip-flopped and agreed to look for space in the Moose Jaw Hospital.

Brad Wall said on June 3 that he’d release details within two weeks of where they’ll put the hyperbaric chamber. That deadline has passed.

“This is vital medical equipment often used in an emergency, and the government had to be dragged kicking and screaming to the conclusion that it shouldn’t be chucked away or put in a private clinic in a strip mall somewhere,” said NDP health critic Danielle Chartier.

The government initially excluded the hyperbaric chamber from the new Moose Jaw Hospital because it used the John Black method of Lean to shrink the hospital design, both in floor space and in the number of rooms. Apparently, that also meant cutting services, because the hyperbaric chamber was cut out.

After a fightback from patients, firefighters, families, doctors and the NDP, the government finally agreed it should stay in the hospital. But, since the hospital design is too small, Wall was unable to say what solution the government would come up with.

“Moose Jaw people did an incredible thing here, standing up to the government when their own MLAs wouldn’t,” said Chartier. “All Saskatchewan people deserve an answer – how is the government going to fix the problem it caused?”

The hyperbaric chamber is used to treat a variety of conditions from severe burns to difficult-to-heal wounds, and a number of conditions related to cancer and diabetes. Hyperbaric treatment saves lives and prevents long-term damage in the case of carbon monoxide poisoning.

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For more information, contact:
Erin Morrison, NDP caucus