Renfrew County’s outgoing Medical Officer of Health (MOH) has issued a farewell message to the community, thanking residents and health care workers for outstanding efforts throughout the pandemic.
Dr. Robert Cushman, at age 75, will officially retire on New Year’s Eve.
In a clip shared through YouTube, he says the county has fared better than most regions of Ontario at keeping COVID at bay.
“In the beginning, we had the most admirable record in Ontario,” he says. “Later things got a little more difficult. But we still stand well above our peers in Ontario and that’s because of the public support. Obviously, there’s been some friction points; not everyone has agreed. But by and large there’s been enormous support from the public.”
“We really built a real coalition, a real network to fight the pandemic in Renfrew County and it paid off. We saw better results here than in a lot of other jurisdictions in Ontario. So thank you, thank you, thank you. Your work has been superb.”
The doctor is still doing his job right to the end.
His final message included encouragement to fight the “triple threat” that’s troubling the health care system now. That’s the combination of flu, COVID-19 and RSV. He asks people to keep following health guidelines and to stay up to date with vaccinations.
Dr. Ian Gemmill will become the Acting Medical Officer of Health for Renfrew County in the New Year and will serve in the role until a new, permanent MOH is hired.