FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – Charlottetown, PE (May 2, 2014) – Mike Redmond, Leader of the New Democratic Party of Prince Edward Island, is calling on the Ghiz Government to take immediate action to remedy the dire situation of some 4,000 Islanders who suffer from inflammatory arthritis. With only one Island-based specialist in the treatment of this painful condition, these Islanders are suffering for up to 18 months to get an appointment to see an off-Island doctor.
“Inflammatory arthritis is a painful, progressive disease that attacks Islanders of all ages,” says Redmond. “Many of those afflicted require specialist care as often as four to six times a year, and if left untreated, the disease progresses more rapidly, with greater suffering.”
The Canadian Rheumatology Association recommends one rheumatologist for every 70,000 persons. Despite the fact that two motions have been unanimously adopted by the Legislative Assembly supporting the recruitment of a specialist in rheumatology, PEI’s physician recruiting team has apparently received no direction to proceed on recruitment.
NDP Leader Redmond says that “Every time I look into the priorities of Health PEI and Health Minister Currie I’m shaking my head in wonder–whether it be the under-funding of mental health and addictions, reduction of nursing positions, or rural dialysis cutbacks–and this is another area requiring immediate attention.”
“Minister Currie, these people are suffering, get your physician team on the job to bring them needed medical support. Set some deadlines for action on this so these people have some hope,” said Redmond.
Leader, NDP PEI