18 Jun Statement on NS College of Physicians’ Move to Regulate Private Health Care

Published in the Chronicle Herald June 18, 2014 At their recent annual general meeting, the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Nova Scotia announced that they are getting ready for the privatization of health care. They will look at ways to regulate private health care as part of their strategic two year plan. This is a mistake and one that will put patients at risk. The College has a key role to play in setting the quality of care. They are the regulating body for all physicians and surgeons in their province. Part of the College’s mandate is to ensure the highest...

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25 Jul Open Letter to Premier Dexter: Stand up for Public Health Care

Published July 25, 2013 in The Chronicle Herald Premier Darrell Dexter Province of Nova Scotia P.O. Box 726 Halifax, N.S.  B3J 2T3   Dear Premier Dexter, We, the undersigned organizations, made up of doctors, nurses, health care workers and providers; health committees, community organizations, patient groups, civil society, and organized labour, are deeply concerned about the expiration of the 2004 Canada Health Accord. In 2014, the current Health Care Accord – the deal that sets funding and health care service delivery agreements between the federal, provincial and territorial governments – expires and must be renegotiated. Past accords set valuable benchmarks for progress. In the immediate years following their...

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18 Jun Against Parking Fees at Saint Vincent’s Nursing Home

Printed in The Chronicle Herald, June 18th, 2013   As someone who has worked at Saint Vincent’s Nursing Home, I was disappointed to hear that a new user fee — in the form of parking fees — will now be an added burden for those looking to spend time with loved ones. Our seniors live in long-term care homes that are stretched for resources. With frequent understaffing, nursing home staff struggle to provide the basic level of care, and cannot afford to spend additional quality time with residents. The brightest light in any resident’s day is when their family comes to visit. Parking fees...

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22 Apr Letter to the Editor: Health Council demise a sign

Published in The Chronicle Herald April 21, 2013 Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s decision to cut the Health Council of Canada should clear any lingering doubts: the federal government has abandoned all responsibility for health care and is turning its back on the provinces as they struggle to pick up the pieces. The council provided accountability and promoted consistent quality of care, nationwide. The Harper government’s rationale for axing the council is that with next year’s expiry of the intergovernmental health agreements, “there is no longer a need” for it to monitor progress. But why does Harper not intend to renew national health care agreements?
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06 Mar March 6/12 Op-Ed- Pay More, Get Less: Private health care wrong way to go

Published in The Chronicle Herald March 6th, 2013 By John Hutton and Adrienne Silnicki It is disappointing that NDP Health Minister Dave Wilson has chosen to renew a government contract with Scotia Surgery. The contract, worth $1 million to the for-profit clinic to perform 500 surgeries per year, raises a lot of unanswered questions. Beyond the questionable ethics of making medically necessary care a for-profit business, one has to ask if renewing the contract, intended to reduce wait lists, is an efficient use of the public’s health care dollars. Given the poor track record of private-public partnerships in Canada, intense scrutiny and broad public consultation are warranted.
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