Carolyn Plummer, Highlands Health Services, or HHHS’s President and CEO, says one of the Emergency departments in Haliburton County may have to close.

In a letter to the community released Monday, Plummer says that the continued challenges around staffing and nursing capacity mean that, in the coming weeks, it is very likely they will need to reduce service at one of the Emergency Departments.

The letter goes on to say that HHHS is seeking support from staffing agencies across the country and other healthcare organizations across Ontario, but if they are unable to find adequate staffing, they will have to close one of the Emergency Departments during a set number of hours and days.

Plummer says It is important to note that this current staff shortage is not related to the vaccination policy and the shortages pre-date the pandemic and exist across the province.

She added that no decision has been made about which Emergency Department will need to reduce services and they will communicate to the community as soon as possible, and no later than 48 hours in advance of a planned reduction of hours or closure.

***With files from Rick Lowes