On March 15 at a special meeting, the Board of Directors of The Scarborough Hospital (TSH) decided that it would not proceed with a proposed merger with Rouge Valley Health System (RVHS) at this time.
At its meeting on March 4, the TSH Board approved the proposed merger in principle, conditional on obtaining the Ontario government’s approval of capital planning grants to start the feasibility, planning and design work for facility renewal (one in Scarborough and one in west Durham) and on financial support being provided by the Central East Local Health Integration Network (Central East LHIN) and/or the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MOHLTC) to address unavoidable one-time costs and ongoing operating costs associated with the merger.
The hospitals requested $29.5 million, and received word on March 14 from the MOHLTC that they would receive $3 million, intended to assist with capital planning processes.
Mergers take time and money. The upfront investments, in full, were needed to ensure that the merged hospital would have been set-up for long-term success. TSH and RVHS by themselves do not have the financial capacity to make the necessary investments to successfully implement the merger.
At the Board meeting, TSH accepted the Province of Ontario’s $3 million in one-time funding and will participate with RVHS in the capital planning process to address the infrastructure deficiencies and modernization of the hospital facilities that will lead to a MOHLTC Stage 1 capital planning process approval.
At the direction of the Central East LHIN, through a facilitated integration process, the hospitals worked closely with their stakeholders over the past year to explore ways to create an integrated system of health care services that would deliver outstanding care to meet the needs of the people in our community while using resources more effectively.
“A big part of this process has been listening to our patients, the community, and stakeholder groups,” said Stephen Smith, TSH Board Chair, “We received a broad range of feedback and ideas that have guided our work, which has been focused on putting patients first.”
“The hospitals have gained tremendous support for the merger from our many stakeholders,” said Robert Biron, TSH President and CEO, “The value proposition of the proposed merger is sound – it’s all about improving patient care and sustaining our local health care system for future generations.”
After completing a comprehensive preferred integration plan, legal and financial due diligence, and extensive stakeholder engagement activities, the hospitals came to the conclusion that a merger was the best way to continue delivering quality patient care for many years to come.
The proposed merger was aligned with the province’s transformation agenda, as outlined in their Action Plan for Health Care, and would ultimately improve care delivery for the communities served.
If circumstances change in the future, TSH will reconsider the opportunity. TSH will continue to work with the Central East LHIN, RVHS, physicians and other health service providers to advance health care delivery for the Scarborough community.
TSH thanks its partners at RVHS, community, Board members, physicians, staff and all health care partners for their work, support and contributions throughout this process.
Read the press release: The Scarborough Hospital Board Declines To Merge At This Time