LHIN warns merger of two Toronto hospitals could undermine access and quality

As The Scarborough Hospital (TSH) openly advocates for a merger with the Toronto East General, CEO Dr. John Wright may have difficulty persuading the Central East Local Health Integration Network of the merits of bringing the two hospitals together.

In a preliminary report recently posted online, the Central East LHIN raises a number of concerns, including the fact that such a merger does not align with their clinical services plan.

The CE LHIN states there is no evidence that “this will improve quality or access,” suggesting that it may possibly undermine it.

The LHIN states that the current activity is not client-focused, lacks a clear engagement strategy, and has not garnered physician support.

They further state there is no evidence to suggest a merger would assist in addressing population health challenges within Scarborough.

The LHIN suggests that if TSH is interested in an alliance, that it would make more sense to look towards “integration” with the Scarborough Centenary Hospital, which is part of the Rouge Valley Health System.

This is not the first time that suggestion has been made. Community groups in Ajax, who have never been happy having their hospital linked to Scarborough Centenary, have long advocated that Centenary should join TSH, leaving the Ajax-Pickering Hospital to link to Durham’s Lakeridge Health.

No application has yet been made by the two hospitals to proceed with a formal merger.

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