Tag: budget

Deputy health administrator says Ottawa Co. Health Dept. feeling budget cuts

WEST OLIVE, Mich. — The Ottawa County Health Department provided some insight into its latest struggles after commissioners made some budget cuts.

At Tuesday’s Health Human Services Committee meeting, the deputy health officer outlined staffing capacity, hiring and retention issues the department hasn’t experienced in ten years.

Deputy Health Administrator Marcia Mansaray explained that 25 people separated from the department this year, including six who were let go when COVID-19 grants weren’t renewed. She adds the department has 12 full-time positions sitting open. At the meeting, she explained one position had six people lined up for an interview, but only one showed up.

Additionally, Mansaray said the services they offer are also being affected. She told commissioners food inspections for schools are being reduced. The deputy health administrator says schools are only receiving one inspection, rather than the usual two per year. The health department also tracks where they are on well and septic permits. Mansaray says they’re three weeks out. Currently, they’re working to respond to 30 permits, compared to the typical 15.

“Canary in the coal mine,” Mansaray warned. “We don’t like people waiting for those because they are connected to development and real estate sales.”

The county health department also presented a draft proposal to add funding to health education. The department sent commissioners a request of $121,000 to have a full-time health educator work as the Ottawa Food Coordinator. County documents show this request came after the county cut to health education and nutrition by 48% for FY24.

Mansaray told commissioners they had a conversation with County Administrator John Gibbs and Deputy Administrator Ben Wetmore about the need for this position.

Last month, Wetmore gave the board “Ottawa Food— Just the Facts.” In the presentation, Wetmore explained to the board members, “The Ottawa Food program is

N.L. takes bite out of denture expenses by boosting budget

A denturist works on a set of fake teeth.
The maximum payable amount per standard denture is now $900 in Newfoundland and Labrador, an increase of $150. (Bruce Tilley/CBC)

Newfoundland and Labrador’s Health Department has increased the budget and the maximum payable amount in its adult denture program.

The changes, announced Wednesday, take effect immediately, with a 20 per cent increase to the dentures budget, from $700,000 to $840,000.

In a statement, the department called it a recognition of the importance of good oral health for a person’s self-esteem and overall health.

Further increases were added to the maximum payable amount, which is now $900 instead of $750 per standard denture.

Partial dentures got an increase to $600 from $503.

The maximum annual cap increase has gone from $1,500 to $1,800. 

The provincial adult denture program was implemented in January 2012, with last change to fees happening in 2015. 

In an email to CBC News, the Newfoundland and Labrador Dental Association said the increases help maintain the sustainability of the program, not only for patients but also for dental professionals and the government.

“People’s oral health is crucial to their overall health so we are always in support of increases to access to care for Newfoundlanders and Labradorians,” says the statement.

The Health Department said there have been significant cost increases for providing dentures since, with no reciprocal increase.

Changes requested by denturists’ association

The Denturist Association of Newfoundland and Labrador requested the increase in the denture budget to allow an increase of maximum payable amount for dentures. The dental association said it supported that request from Day 1.

“There hasn’t been an increase in a number of years … so it was time that it had to be re-evaluated and the government did so,” says the statement.

Only people between 19 and 65 years old who are on

Ottawa Co. administrator defends health department budget cuts

OLIVE TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — Ottawa County Administrator John Gibbs defended proposed cuts to the health department with the clock ticking before the budget deadline.

The Ottawa County Board of Commissioners held a public hearing Tuesday on the proposed $263 million 2024 budget. The meeting lasted more than five hours.

One Allendale resident who spoke is a member of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, working in its Crisis Standards of Care committee.

“I want to implore you to consider their expertise, their training, their heart and the impact this has on the very people that when you become sick you turn to for care,” the woman said to commissioners.

Some public commenters cited a new letter sent to commissioners signed by more than 100 area physicians. They urged the board not to reduce the health department’s budget.

“The COVID-19 pandemic exposed a chronic underfunding of the infrastructure of public health as part of our local healthcare system,” they wrote. “Our goal should not be to return to this low level of investment into our collective health.”

The hearing came just days after hundreds rallied against the budget cuts outside the health department in Holland.

“County residents have shown with their voices and their feet that they support the health department and do not wish to see its funding cut,” one resident said Tuesday.

Health officer Adeline Hambley, who sued the board after it attempted to oust her in January, said in August that Gibbs emailed her advising her to prepare for a $2.5 million budget. Hambley later said that allocation would have forced the health department to close within four to seven weeks after Oct. 1.

The county released a new proposed budget last Wednesday showing the health department would

Ottawa Co. administrator handling budget cuts

GRAND HAVEN, Mich. — Ottawa County is nearly a month away from the start of the 2024 fiscal year.

FOX 17 learned Wednesday that Ottawa County Administrator John Gibbs plans to handle the creation of a new public health budget without input from any current leadership within the health department, including Health Officer Adeline Hambley.

Health Dept.: Ottawa Co. administrator handling budget cuts

Hambley says Gibbs has directed fiscal services to develop her new budget. She explained there’s a discussion to use $1.3 million from its health fund’s contingency account to supplement needs.

“I know Fiscal Services has been trying to figure out how to make that budget, budget balance and meet the law,” Hambley said. “I have not been involved in any of the conversations about public health programming and potential cuts. I’ve reached out numerous times to ask to be at the table or to say this is complex and we should meet and discuss with fiscal. I have not received anything.”

Her office initially asked for $6.4 million from the general fund. At a recent county meeting, Chairperson Joe Moss asked for it to be cut down to $2.5 million and cut out all COVID-19 grants. A total reduction ofits 2024 budget by more than 80 percent. Hambley said this would force the department to close within a matter of weeks.

However, Ottawa County officials pushed back on those claims.

Hambley explains the COVID grants make up to $2.2 million in funding. The health department says if this money goes away, this is also going to eliminate six positions.

“If you take out all the COVID funds, it’s actually a lower operating budget than 2023. Our proposed budget for 24, lower than 2022, and it’s lower than 2021,” Hambley added.

Hambley says that this new change of

Saskatchewan Health Authority outlines $4.8B budget, plans for future of health care

The Saskatchewan government and the Saskatchewan Health Authority (SHA) have outlined their budget for 2023-24 and it includes nearly $5 billion in funding.

On Thursday, the SHA board of directors approved a $4.82-billion operating budget for the 2023-24 fiscal year, as well as a capital expenditure plan of more than $314.7 million.

“Our Board recognizes the critical role our services play in supporting a high quality of life for all Saskatchewan residents,” Arlene Wiks, the SHA board chair, said. “The budget approved today strengthens those services by prioritizing investments that will enhance care for the patients and residents we serve across the province.”

A few key areas outlined in the budget include:

  • $42.5 million will be dedicated to the surgical program, providing an additional 6,000 procedures, for a total of 103,000 surgeries this fiscal year.
  • $39 million to support seniors’ care and facilitate seniors living in their own homes and the community.
  • $19.8-million increase to support 64 permanent acute and complex care beds located at Royal University Hospital in Saskatoon (36 beds) and Pasqua Hospital in Regina.

Mental health

Moving forward, the SHA also outlined an emphasis on mental health and addictions resources.

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The budget includes $12.4 million to address new and ongoing mental health and addictions initiatives. There will also be an additional 150 addiction treatment spaces introduced in the province.

At the St. John’s Hospital in Estevan, 26 post-treatment beds have also been expanded. Rapid access to counselling services is also being expanded from 23 to 31 communities.

Overdose Outreach Teams in Regina and Saskatoon will connect people who have recently experienced an overdose with programs and services.

As part of looking forward, the SHA is also looking back at the success of the new tactics put in place for recruiting health-care workers to

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