Brampton urgent care centre reopens after staffing issues force early closure

·2 min read
Peel Memorial Hospital's urgent care centre closed early at 5 p.m. on Sunday. (CBC - image credit)
Peel Memorial Hospital's urgent care centre closed early at 5 p.m. on Sunday. (CBC - image credit)

Peel Memorial Hospital's urgent care centre is returning to its full operating hours Monday, a day after staffing issues forced its early closure on Sunday.

William Osler Health System first notified patients of the closure on Twitter on Sunday morning, saying the centre would close at 5 p.m. and directing people to the emergency departments at Brampton Civic Hospital and Etobicoke General.

"Like a number of hospitals, we are experiencing human resource challenges and continue to explore all strategies to help our teams continue to provide exemplary care to our community," the health system said in a tweet.

"As always, our top priority remains the health and safety of our patients, staff, physicians, volunteers and our community. We ask for our community's understanding during this difficult time."

On Monday morning, the health system said on Twitter that the urgent care centre had reopened for its full operating hours, from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Dr. Mike Howlett, president of the Canadian Association of Emergency Physicians, said on CBC Radio's Metro Morning on Monday that there are several reasons Ontario hospitals are under severe stress right now.

LISTEN | Public health nurse describes problems in Brampton hospitals:

People may blame pressures brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, he said, but that's just the tip of a "very large iceberg.

"All it's really done is exposed how crowded and short on workers we've become, and how fragile community care resources are," Howlett said.

Hospitals are exceptionally crowded, he said, with patient numbers increasing beyond the capacity for acute care. On top of that, the physician and nurse workforce is declining, Howlett added.

Healthcare reforms brought about starting in the early 1990s, alongside Canada's aging population, are exacerbating the issue, he said.

"Now we know we have just simply cut too much," he said.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting