On December 3, 2021, Horizon announced that due to the ongoing nursing shortage at the Sackville Memorial Hospital, all inpatient beds will be temporarily converted to transitional care beds for patients who are waiting for long term care placement. Because of this temporary change in service, Sackville patients who require acute care will be transferred to the Moncton Hospital.
Town Council, the Rural Health Action Group, and community stakeholders have been actively working with Horizon since Emergency Department closures were first proposed in February 2020. This recent announcement was startling given recent collaboration efforts. “Council is deeply concerned about the ongoing cuts in services to the Sackville Memorial Hospital and we know our residents are upset.” said Mayor Shawn Mesheau. “Though Horizon has called this recent change temporary, we want to assure residents that Council continues to work with Horizon to find a long-term solution to these ongoing issues.”
The Memramcook-Tantramar Community Taskforce submitted a letter (Community Taskforce letter to Horizon) to the Province and Horizon Health on December 6th outlining their outrage and disappointment after this recent announcement. Sackville’s Town Council passed a motion in support of this letter at the regular meeting on December 6th (Council motion Dec 6).
Interim Horizon CEO Dr. John Dornan and his team also presented to Council at the meeting and provided a statement outlining nursing opportunities at Sackville Memorial Hospital (Horizon CEO Statement – Nursing Recruitment).
The Town continues to work with stakeholders on this important issue and ongoing actions include a marketing strategy to help recruit medical professionals to our Town.