‘Every family has a horror story’: former MNA urges Outaouais health execs to step down – Ottawa

Two executives responsible for health-care services in the Outaouais need to step aside before someone forces them out, a former member of Quebec’s National Assembly said Tuesday. 

‘I don’t know how worse it can get because right now I think … the breaking point is already there.’
– Charlotte l’Ecuyer, former Pontiac MNA

Former Pontiac MNA Charlotte l’Ecuyer, who served as parliamentary assistant to Quebec’s minister of health and social services, is raising concerns about the merger of health centres in 2015 when the Centre integré de santé et services sociaux de l’Outaouais (CISSO) was created.

In an opinion letter sent to Radio-Canada Tuesday morning, l’Ecuyer said the merger was initially presented as a “magical solution” to improve health care for people in the Outaouais, but it has failed to live up to the hype. 

“I think it’s time they look seriously [at] how they manage that transformation. They didn’t take into account the people’s need. They didn’t take into account what the worker needs,” she said in an interview with Radio-Canada. 

“And I think if we keep on going in that way it’s going to get worse and worse. I don’t know how worse it can get because right now I think … the breaking point is already there.”

Damning coroner’s report

In the letter, she accused CISSO president Jean Hébert and director of professional services Dr. Guy Morisette of dragging their feet on improving care and experimenting with a new model at the expense of patients and their families. 

“Maybe it’s better that they take the decision [to step down] before somebody takes it for them,” she said in the interview. 

Her criticism comes on the heels of a damning coroner’s report that concluded a series of delays and miscommunication contributed to the circumstances surrounding the death of Marc-André Maxwell of Cantley, Que., on Dec. 28, 2015. 

Coroner Pascale Boulay said Maxwell “fell through the cracks” at the Gatineau hospital, concluding an aid working on the ward at the time of Maxwell’s death had no training in how to detect signs of cardiac arrest.

Maxwell’s family said last week they are planning to sue the hospital. 

“Every family has a horror story, and nobody seems to realize it’s going on,” said l’Ecuyer. 

Jean Hébert acknowledged the weaknesses in his organization, saying that the coroner’s recommendations were an “alarm bell” for him. 

He told Radio-Canada he wants to work on improving…

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