Funding cuts to Ontario pharmacists would have devastating effect on patients

November 11, 2015

McCutchon said taking this money out of neighbourhood healthcare would be a devastating blow to patients and the pharmacists who care for them, especially at small independent pharmacies, which make up the majority of pharmacies in Ontario.

"These cuts mean that I will have no choice but to cut my team," McCutchon said. "Residents of Thunder Bay will no longer be able to rely on someone being behind the pharmacy counter, or on the other end of the phone line, whenever they need us. We will also have to look at reducing our operating hours, especially on-call service."

In rural and northern areas, a pharmacist might be the only health care provider available within hundreds of kilometers.

There is an increasing demand for the kind of care pharmacists provide, but it is this kind of service that is at risk if the proposed funding cuts are implemented, McCutchon said.

"Altogether we end up with a situation where we have an increasing level of demand for the frontline health care we provide, with fewer hours, fewer pharmacists - and in some areas of the province - fewer locations."