By Robert Washburn
The CBC is doing some first-rate journalism around health care in Canada right now. One feature sticks out as an unbeatable opportunity for residents of the county to give some candid feedback on Northumberland Hills Hospital.
The crazy part is nobody has done this.
As part of its investigation, a Rate My Hospital feature is located on the CBC News website, allowing anyone to comment on how they were treated. Things like respect, communication, timeliness, cleanliness and whether or not you would recommend the hospital are measured.
Residents regularly get reports and studies, along with accreditation, related to the hospital. However, these are tightly controlled and the results are usually there to provide a message supporting the hospital. And, the hospital board, along with the LHIN (Local Hospital Integration Network) work overtime to make anything negative is curtailed.
Yet, in casual conversation with many people, it is amazing to hear some of the hair-raising stories people have about their treatment. Someone always seems to be complaining on the street or in the coffee shops. In fairness, there are lots of letters in the newspapers, as well as messages of thanks in the classified section heaping praise.
It would be interesting to see what would happen if lots of people responded. It is a wonderful chance to give an unfettered assessment. Every person who has ever used the hospital should participate, especially those who feel they never get a chance for input.