Morning Coffee – By Aaron Hall

Weather forecast for Monday, April 23, 2018

Today – Mainly sunny. Wind becoming southeast 20 km/h gusting to 40 early this morning. High 18 except 11 near Lake Erie. UV index 7 or high.

Tonight – Increasing cloudiness early this evening. 30 percent chance of showers before morning. Wind southeast 20 km/h becoming light this evening. Low 9.

Fuel company powering IPM 2018

Jaymie Waddick (R) and Ian Waddick (left, representing Mark Waddick) of Waddick fuels present a cheque representing the $25,000 in fuel the company is donating to fuel the International Plowing Match and Rural Expo 2018. Match Mascot Tobe Cobe Jr and Match Co-Chair Leon Leclair accepted the donation at the Wallaceburg and District Chamber of Commerce Business After Hours April 19 2018 (Submitted photo)

The International Plowing Match and Rural Expo 2018 is pleased to announce the support of Waddick Fuels, based in Chatham-Kent with offices in Lambton and Essex Counties, as its fuel sponsor for the Match which begins September 18, in Pain Court.

Jaymie and Mark Waddick made the in-kind donation of approximately $25,000 in gasoline and diesel that will fuel transportation to and around the Match and is already providing fuel for the IPM pickup truck that is attending events across the province.

Vehicles that will be fueled include the tractors used to move people from parking lots to the Match as well as transportation within the Match itself, and for equipment used to build Tented City and the RV Park.

“It was an easy decision,” says Jaymie Waddick, manager of Waddick Fuels. “Since my Grandpa started this business in 1946, agriculture has been a big part of the business and farm accounts are still our biggest customer base by far.”

Match officials appreciate the donation.

“Having a local company supply the fuel needs of the Match makes a big difference,” says co-chair Leon Leclair. “The fact that Jaymie lives in Pain Court just a short distance from the Match adds to the local flavour.”

“Waddick Fuels is a local company that understands the importance of community involvement,” added co-chair Darrin Canniff. “That is very important to all of us.”

The International Plowing Match and Rural Expo is one of the largest outdoor agriculture and rural living events in North America.

IPM 2018 is organized by a Chatham-Kent committee of volunteers in cooperation with the Ontario Plowmen’s Association, a non-profit organzation that works with local commmunities to host an event in a different Ontario location each year.

IPM 2018 will see thousands of visitors, plowing competitions and a 100 acre Tented City featuring displays of life in Chatham-Kent, exhibitors’ products, agrcultural education displays, and entertainment.

An RV Park will provide approximately 1000 dedicated sites. For more information about IPM 2018 please visit plowingmatch.org/ipm2018.

Better health care, more support for Ontario nurses

Ontario is making major investments in the health care system to address capacity issues, reduce wait times and provide better care closer to home.

Premier Kathleen Wynne was at the annual meeting of the Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario in Toronto recently to discuss how the government is supporting nurses by strengthening the health care system so it can better meet the needs of a growing and aging population.

“As Premier, it’s my job to make sure Ontario’s highly trained and dedicated health care professionals have the resources they need to provide the best care to families across the province, Wynne said in a press release.

“That is why the number of nurses employed in Ontario has increased every year since I became Premier. Nurses are essential to every aspect of patient care. As the health care system continues to evolve to keep up with the changes in our growing and aging communities, our investments will ensure that people can continue to rely on excellent care — no matter who they are or where they live in Ontario.”

Wynne shared how Ontario is increasing funding for the hospital sector with an $822 million investment in 2018-19 — a major increase of 4.6 per cent on average. This increase, in addition to the over 3 per cent provided last year, is allowing hospitals to expand essential services, provide faster access to critical care and priority procedures, and invest with precision in the specific needs of their patients and community.

Ontario is also providing more than $19 billion over the next 10 years to build and expand hospitals.

Together, these investments support nurses and other hospital staff in providing better care.

To create a stronger, more integrated mental health system in Ontario, the government is launching a historic expansion of mental health and addiction services, with a funding boost of $2.1 billion that brings total mental health care spending to more than $17 billion over four years. This is the biggest mental health investment in Canadian history and will ensure that people are able to access mental health care where and when they need it.

The Premier also highlighted how the province will continue to improve care in long-term care (LTC) homes by:

– Investing more than $300 million over the next three years, including $50 million in 2018-19, to hire an additional registered nurse at every LTC home

– Increasing the amount of direct care for each person in LTC to a provincial average of four hours daily by 2022, providing residents with more direct, one-on-one patient care, including nursing, personal support and therapeutic care

– Creating 5,000 new LTC beds across Ontario by 2022. These beds, which will include nearly 500 for Indigenous communities, are part of Ontario’s commitment to create more than 30,000 new beds over the next decade.

– Supporting Ontario’s nurses in providing better and more accessible care is part of the government’s plan to support care, create opportunity and make life more affordable during this period of rapid economic change. The plan includes free prescription drugs for everyone under 25, and 65 or over, through the biggest expansion of medicare in a generation, free tui tion for hundreds of thousands of students, a higher minimum wage and better working conditions, and free preschool child care from 2 ½ to kindergarten.

“As our population grows and changes, the role of nurses will only become more important,” stated Dr. Helena Jaczek, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care.

“The investments we make today to support our health care workers will improve our system now and lead to better health for all Ontarians.”

More details:

– From 2013 to 2017, the number of nurses working in Ontario increased by 9,589. The number of RN employment positions in the hospital sector increased by 2,356 between 2012 and 2017.

– The government is investing an additional $650 million in home care over the next three years. This includes $180 million in new funding in 2018-19 for an estimated 2.8 million more hours of personal support — including respite for caregivers, 284,000 more nursing visits and 58,000 more therapy visits.

– Last April, Ontario provided nurse practitioners with the authority to prescribe controlled drugs and substances.

– Across the province, up to 40 major hospital projects are under construction or in planning stages.

– Since 2010, Ontario has created 27 new nurse practitioner-led clinics, providing faster access to family health care for more than 60,000 patients across the province.

– Ontario is boosting access to primary care by investing $102 million over three years to support the creation or expansion of interprofessional primary care teams. In 2017-18, this will help create 19 new or expanded teams that will recruit nearly 100 new health professionals, including nurse practitioners and registered nurses.

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If you have a suggestion, story idea, column idea, or if you want to say hello… drop me an e-mail at aaron@sydenhamcurrent.ca.