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Last week we held the first Board meeting of fiscal year 2012-13. Our budget for this year, the changes in the Ministry's funding formula for hospitals and the state of the Ontario economy were very much on the minds of our Board Trustees as we discussed how we would balance our budget for this fiscal year.
The discussion underlined UHN's commitments which include: a safe and secure environment for everyone; the best quality of care that we can deliver; no layoffs due to budget pressures, very carefully monitoring of the amount of care we provide so that we are not treating more patients than our budgets allow. This will require very careful monitoring and we will be reviewing our patient volumes with our doctors constantly. We will also continue with very tight controls on hiring.
As I've said before, with all of your support, we should be able to maintain these commitments and remain in a financially balanced position. It will not be easy and all of us will need to stretch a little, look for ways of saving time and money, and bring forward innovative ways of working so that we can save a bit more money. We will continue to focus on providing effective and safe care while trying to do things more efficiently. In watching the economic outlook for the province, it is clear that we are going to be in this tight financial position for some time to come. We will need to examine every suggested hire, we will need to hold many vacant positions (except those contributing to direct patient care) and we will work very hard with everyone to reduce sick time and overtime.
I continue to see that the people in this organization are the most resourceful, courageous and committed health care professionals in the country. You make a difference to our patients' lives every day. Making sure that we continue to provide excellent care focused on our patients' needs is the most important commitment that UHN can make. Our Board supports that commitment.