PERTH, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Jan. 25, 2013) -

Attn: Assignment Editor

Following two well‐attended community meetings earlier this month, a new coalition called Save Our Services (SOS) has formed to fight proposed drastic service cuts at the Perth and Smiths Falls District Hospital. A community rally is planned for noon Tuesday January 29, 2013.

The cuts ‐ the first of a five year cuts plan by the provincial government include: closing 12 per cent of the hospital beds and reductions to hip, knee and cataract surgeries, diagnostic imaging, emergency, food services, pharmacy, day hospital, sexual assault and domestic abuse programs, physiotherapy and others.

Many of those attending the community meetings voiced concerns about the scale of cuts this year and the potential for future service reductions as the provincial government continues to decrease funding to hospitals and the reluctance of area MPP Randy Hillier to advocate for the protection of local hospital services.

SOS is hopeful that following the noon, January 29 rally at his office located at 105 Dufferin Street, Unit 1 in Perth, Ontario, Hillier will have a change of heart and stand with the community against the cuts.

The coalition will also be encouraging area residents to sign a petition that calls for a stop to the proposed cuts, protection of beds and services at the Perth and Smiths Falls District Hospital and for the provincial government to improve overall hospital funding to at least to the average of other provinces. Currently, Ontario funds hospitals at the lowest rate per person of any province in Canada. Due to government policy choices and decreased provincial funding the Perth and Smiths Falls District Hospital is projecting a deficit of $7 million as of March 31, 2012.

The SOS Perth and Smiths Falls Health Coalition is a local chapter affiliated with the Ontario Health Coalition, an organization dedicated to preserving public health care under the principles of the Canadian Health Act, stopping privatization, and improving quality and access to care.

Contact Information:

SOS Perth and Smiths Falls Health Coalition
John Jackson