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January 18, 2019 – Doctors call for Scarborough Grace Hospital (Birchmount Campus) to remain a Full-Service General Hospital

TORONTO – Jim Karygiannis, Toronto City Councillor for Ward 22, Scarborough-Agincourt, today expressed grave concern about the proposal to close the Obstetrics and Inpatient Pediatrics care offered at the Scarborough Hospital- Grace Division (Birchmount Campus) at a Press Conference in front of the Hospital.  Mr. Karygiannis was joined by concerned doctors and staff members.

“During the recent municipal election, I promised the people of Scarborough-Agincourt, that I would fight to keep our hospital as a full-service general hospital.” said Mr. Karygiannis. “The “Scarborough-Grace” has served our community for 34 years.  It is the place where many of our children were born and it is the place we take our loved ones when they need medical attention.”

The proposal to remove Obstetrics and Inpatient Pediatrics care from the Scarborough Hospital- Grace Division (Birchmount Campus) will be presented to the Board of Directors of the Scarborough Health Network in the near future.  Doctors at the hospital have sent a letter to the Chief Executive Officer, Chief of Staff and administration of The Scarborough Health Network and are going on record to express their concerns about the proposed closures.

“I have worked here for over 30 years and I don’t want to see more hallway medicine for Scarborough residents. I am very concerned about the loss of core services at the Birchmount hospital serving Agincourt and North Scarborough.” said Dr. Timothy Devlin, Internist and Gastroenterologist. “This is a smaller, but geographically important, Hospital that should remain as a general hospital for this community for the foreseeable future.

“We are extremely concerned and troubled about the proposals to permanently rip out the Obstetrics and Pediatrics services from the hospital in the heart of North Scarborough/Agincourt.” stated Doctor Raymond Chan, Cardiologist. “We believe that the 176,000 citizens of Scarborough North also deserve to have a hospital in their own neighborhood that has a full service emergency room, one that can provide vital and life saving health care services to pregnant women, babies and young children, much like South Scarborough does.”

“130 front line physicians from the Birchmount hospital community signed a petition opposing the closure of Women and Children’s health programs.” said Dr. Lisa Salamon, Emergency Medicine. “We are concerned that the vulnerable population, served by the Birchmount, who already faces barriers in accessing quality care, would face further barriers due to this proposal.”

Ward 22, Scarborough-Agincourt, is one of the most ethnically diverse neighbourhoods in Canada. It is a vibrant and growing community with approximately 18,000 new residential units scheduled to be built in the next few years.

“New residential units means more people will be living in Scarborough-Agincourt. These new residents will need access to a vibrant hospital.” stated Mr. Karygiannis.  “It is imperative that our hospital remain a full-service general hospital – able to care for everyone who seeks medical attention.”