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Challenge and change in Kawartha Lakes

in Columnists/Community/Health/Poverty Reduction by
From hospital merger talk, to the municipal election, to the cancellation of basic income, it's a time of challenge and change.

Things are going to slide, slide in all directions, Won’t be nothing, Nothing you can measure anymore…

— Leonard Cohen, The Future

It has been a challenging time, filled with community outrage, political deception, and collective anxiety, here in Kawartha Lakes.

Basic Income

The cancellation of the Ontario Basic Income Pilot was not only a broken promise, it was colossally stupid. As a society we had a chance to try something new to deal with poverty and the changing employment landscape.

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Health Unit’s drug strategy captures public concerns and suggests way forward

in Community/Health/Local News by

With a new roadmap providing direction, local residents can join the journey to help tackle and reduce harm associated with drug and alcohol use in the area. The newly-renamed Haliburton, Kawartha Lakes, Northumberland (HKLN) Drug Strategy has released results of a community survey involving more than 600 residents and service providers in the City of Kawartha Lakes, Haliburton County and Northumberland County. The roadmap – entitled HKLN Community Priorities Report 2018 – captures public concerns in the three counties about substance use-related harm and lists priorities on how to better address these concerns.

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How to eat local all winter long

in Columnists/Community/Environment/Health by

It was a hot evening when we visited with José after his shift in the papaya factory in Belize. We were there to hear his story: how he had grown up in a small village close by, how he had cultivated corn for tortillas on communal village land, and beans, squash, peppers and greens in a garden behind his thatched hut.

Then the papaya company moved in and the government forced him and the other villagers off their land so that papaya could be grown instead. José now works at the papaya factory for very low wages. Not only does he have to buy his food in the town, he now also has to pay rent.

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New doctor in Kawartha Lakes starting Oct. 1

in Around Town/Community/Health by
Dr. Mike Gogan.

Kawartha Lakes Health Care Initiative (KLHCI) is announcing there is a new doctor in town. Dr. Mike Gogan will begin practice in Lindsay with Doctors Anderson, Hainer, Wilson and Ready, as of Oct. 1.

Dr. Gogan received his medical degree from Dalhousie University in 2014 and completed his Family Medicine Residency, also at Dalhousie University, in 2016. Dr. Gogan will be accepting new patients through Health Care Connect. If you are not currently registered with Health Care Connect contact them directly at 1-800-445-1822.

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Resistance is not futile: Fight for Ross Memorial because threat to services is real, says OHC

in Around Town/Community/Health/Seniors by
Natalie Mehra, of the OHC, says speak up to save Ross Memorial's services.

In a scathing indictment of hospital mergers that have occurred with shocking regularity across Ontario the past few decades, the Ontario Health Coalition was in Lindsay last night to say “put up a fight” — because the threat to Ross Memorial is real.

Natalie Mehra, executive director of the OHC  — who was interviewed by the Lindsay Advocate  in our initial investigation into the proposed merger — cautioned the crowd about the potential effects to local services if the merger goes ahead unchecked by local residents.

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Giving caregivers ‘powerful tools’ to manage

in Columnists/Health/Seniors by
Almost half of those identified as caregivers are also raising their own families.

At first glance, the numbers are overwhelming, until you pause to think about them. It is estimated that in North America, one out of every four households provides caregiving – millions of people taking on care services for a relative or friend over the age of 50.

With our aging population, more and more people find themselves in situations that they may never have imagined. Almost half of those identified as caregivers in our society are also raising their own family simultaneously, and two-thirds work either full- or part-time. The added pressure and stress of caregiving responsibilities are not easy to handle.

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Health Coalition organizes meetings to talk about proposed merger’s impact

in Around Town/Community/Health/Local News/Seniors by
"We believe that the proposed integration will be devastating, with centralized surgeries, rehabilitation and palliative care moved.”

Citizens concerned about the impact of the proposed ‘integration’ of the Ross Memorial Hospital and the Peterborough Regional Health Centre will have the opportunity to attend local meetings and discuss their thoughts on the merger – but these events were not organized by the hospitals.

The two events, organized by the Peterborough Health Coalition and the Ontario Health Coalition, will be held in Lindsay on Wednesday, Sept. 12, 7-9 p.m. at the Christian Fellowship Centre (59 Mary St W.) and in Peterborough on Thursday Sept. 13, 7-9 p.m. at the Peterborough Lions Center (347 Burnham St).

Charlene Avon, local organizer and a board member of the Ontario Health Coalition, says the events will provide residents with an opportunity to “voice their concerns and tell their stories.” OHC Executive Director Natalie Mehra and local activists will be speaking at both events.

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Rabid bat reminder to take precautions

in Health by

Local residents are being urged to take precautions against rabies in the wake of an incident in which a woman was bitten by a rabid bat in her home.

The Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit says a woman was provided post-exposure vaccine for rabies and is recovering well in the aftermath. The incident took place recently at her home, where a bat that had entered the dwelling bit the woman as she slept. The bat was later captured, sent for testing and tested positive for rabies.

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Health Unit urges Province to reverse basic income cancellation

in Community/Health/Poverty Reduction by
A rally Aug. 7 drew several hundred people to Victoria Park. Photo: Pamela Cornell.

The local Health Unit is strongly urging the Ontario government to reverse course and at least see the Basic Income Guarantee through to the end of its original three-year pilot phase.

A letter containing this message has been sent to the provincial government on behalf of the Haliburton Kawartha Pine Ridge (HKPR) Board of Health, which in 2016 endorsed a position statement calling for a Basic Income Guarantee pilot program in Ontario. The position statement cited the fact that eliminating poverty is an urgent public health issue, as people on low income are more likely to have health problems and die younger than people with higher income.

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Planned hospital merger could be big risk for Ross Memorial

in Around Town/Community/Health/Seniors by
Planned hospital merger could be big risk for Ross Memorial

On November 20, 1902, medical experts travelled by train to Lindsay to be part of the opening of the $80,000 Ross Memorial Hospital, named in honour of the benefactor James L. Ross’ parents. At the time it was one of the finest and best-equipped hospitals in Canada.

A local paper commented that the day was “a red letter day in the history of the County of Victoria.” Ross, a successful railway engineer and philanthropist, had lived briefly in Lindsay and covered the entire cost of the hospital’s construction on the condition that “the County maintain the facility as it would not only be a memorial to his parents, but also a gift to the community he had once called home.”

County of Victoria Warden John Austin, in his remarks at the opening proclaimed, “the spirit which dedicated this building as a memorial of the past, and a blessing for the future, will outlive even its solid walls.”

After generations of local citizens have been born and died in what is surely a cornerstone of our community the questions we must answer now are: “will the hospital outlive the proposed merger with the Peterborough Regional Health Centre (PRHC), and if it does, in what form will it survive?”

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