Hospital Funding Shortfall Axes Orthopaedic Surgery Referrals

WHITEHORSE – The Yukon Party Official Opposition is asking how surgeons could be halting orthopaedic surgery referrals mere days after the Minister of Health and Social Services declared funding shortfalls for Yukon Hospitals were a thing of the past.

In an April 4 letter to other doctors advising they would no longer accept referrals for elective consultation, orthopedic surgeons wrote, “We have been participating in extensive consultation and negotiations with the Yukon Government for over two years, but there has been no increase in operational funding or support for the orthopedic surgery program that would help us accommodate the rapidly growing demands of our steadily increasing population.”

Last fall, the Yukon Party brought up the fact that many health care professionals were sounding the alarm over scaled back surgical services and medical imaging cuts due to a lack of funding. In early December, the Liberal government released the Ernst & Young report which looked at hospital funding. That report confirmed that during the last four fiscal years, Yukon Hospital Corporation has suffered from a ‘chronic cash flow and operating shortfall.’

After the presentation of the 2024/25 territorial budget, the health minister said that the budget would properly fund hospital services and health care in the territory for the coming year.

“When the territorial budget was first introduced on March 7, we immediately identified that funding for Yukon Hospitals was $14 million less than last year,” said Health and Social Services Critic Brad Cathers. “With both costs and population on the rise, the minister needs to understand that more funding for Yukon Hospitals is needed, not less. The Liberal government needs to act on their own hospital funding report done by Ernst & Young and ensure adequate funding for our health care system so Yukoners are not travelling out of the territory for services that they should be able to access here at home.”


Tim Kucharuk
Media Director
(867) 689-7874

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