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U.S. doctors call for Canadian-style healthcare system

May 25, 2016


The following article by Karen Palmer appeared in the May 24, 2016 issue of the Victoria Times Colonist newspaper:

In a dramatic show of physician support for deep health-care reform in the U.S., more than 2,200 physician leaders have signed a “Physician’s Proposal” calling for sweeping change.

The proposal, published this month in the American Journal of Public Health, calls for the creation of a publicly financed, single-payer, national health program to cover all Americans for all medically necessary care.

If that sounds familiar, it should. These American doctors are calling for Canadian-style medicare. They want a decisive break from the expensive and inefficient private-insurance industry at the heart of the U.S. health-care system.

How ironic that at the same time U.S. physicians are calling for a single-payer health system like ours, Canada is in the midst of a legal battle threatening to pave the way for a multi-payer system resembling what has failed Americans.

What’s at stake? A trial about to begin in British Columbia threatens to make the Canada Health Act unenforceable.

The Canada Health Act is federal legislation that guides our health-care system. It strongly discourages private payment for medically necessary hospital and physician services covered under our publicly funded medicare plans. This includes out-of-pocket payments in the form of extra-billing or other user charges. Legislation in most provinces further prohibits private insurance that duplicates what is already covered under provincial plans.

If patients are billed for medically necessary hospital and physician care, the federal government is mandated to withhold an equivalent amount from federal cash transfers to provinces or territories violating the act.

At least that’s what supposed to happen.
Read more »

Similkameen Mental Health Project

May 19, 2016


The following is an invitation to participate in a research project conducted by The University of British Columbia and Interior Health:

We would like to invite you to participate in a research project focusing on mental health in older adults in the Similkameen Valley. We are asking you to take part in a focus/discussion group (1.5 – 2 hours in length) to discuss your experiences, services and supports that are working well, the gaps in mental health services available in your community, and what might help. You will receive $20.00 to help cover your travel costs.

You are invited to participate in the focus group if you:

  • are 50 years or older
  • have a mental health concern (you do not need an official diagnosis) or have a family member or close friend with a mental health concern
  • live in the Similkameen communities of Keremeos, Hedley, Princeton, or surrounding areas

Princeton Focus Group: Tuesday, June 7th 2016, 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm at Princeton Family Services, 56 Kenley Avenue in Princeton.

If you are interested in participating or would like more information please contact: Tracy Janzen (Co-Investigator) at 250-878-3291 or email: Tracy.Janzen@alumni.ubc.ca.

Walton Myles Wakefield Monro makes debut

May 13, 2016

Dr Ella family photo

Dr. Ella Monro and her husband, Paul, are the proud parents of a baby boy. Born on May 1st, Walton Myles Wakefield Monro weighed in at 8 pounds 1 ounce and 52 centimetres long.

NEW COLLEGE COURSE WILL CREATE LOCAL JOBS IN HEALTH CARE

May 12, 2016

Eight people from Princeton will have the opportunity to train in the community as health care assistants thanks to a new program being offered through Okanangan College.
“I think it’s great,:” said Ed Staples, president of Support Our Health Care.
“ The fact is there is a shortage of health care assistants province wide and that would include Princeton. This is going to ensure a steady supply of health care assistants in our area and that’s a really good thing.”
The six-month certificate program will prepare students to work directly with clients, as well as part of a health care team. Graduates provide care focused on promoting the physical, emotional, cognitive and social well being of patients. They will be to work in any level of continuing care including home support, adult day care, assisted living and complex care.
The program is being funded by the provincial government’s Ministry of Advanced Education with a $90,000 grant.
“Funding a health care assistant program in Princeton demonstrates the commitment by our government to answering the skill needs of the province,” said Jackie Tegart, Fraser-Nicola MLA.
According to Staples there are significant employment pooportunities in Princeton for health care assistants at facilities like Ridgewood Lodge. He credited the Princeton and District Community Skills Centre with driving the initiative. Read more »

Princeton welcomes Dr. Mousa (Global News)

May 8, 2016


The following news story recently aired on Global TV News:

PRINCETON – Princeton residents are welcoming a new doctor with open arms, following a medical crisis in the Silmikameen town.

The community’s newest physician is Dr. Mahrouse Mousa.

Dr. Mousa was recently certified to practise in Canada after working as a doctor in Egypt for the past three decades, bringing with him a breadth of expertise.

To see the video and read the article, go to:

Global News – Dr. Mousa

Blood Money: Pay for Plasma clinic opens in Saskatoon

April 27, 2016


After a failed attempt by Canadian Plasma Resources to open a pay-for-plasma clinic in Ontario, the province of Saskatchewan has allowed the company to open a clinic in Saskatoon. The following excerpts are from three articles on this controversial decision by the Saskatchewan government.

    From a CBC News story by Kelly Crowe (Posted Apr 26, 2016):

Canadian Blood Services, the agency that oversees the national supply of blood and blood products, says it wants to collect more plasma from Canadians, and CEO Graham Sher won’t rule out the contentious possibility of paying donors.

Although Sher said he would prefer to expand plasma collection using voluntary donors, he said it’s not clear whether that would generate enough volume.

To read the full article click on this link:
CBC article by Kelley Crowe

    The Ontario Public Service Employees Union offers this viewpoint:

Read more »

SOHC Position Paper on Trans Pacific Partnership

April 19, 2016


Concerned citizens demonstrate outside the building where the Committee on International Trade held their first public consultation on the Trans Pacific Partnership.

The following Summary Position Statement identifies five concerns relating to the impact of the Trans-Pacific Partnership on Canadian healthcare. The document was written and researched by Bill Day, SOHC Vice President, with research assistance from Nienke Klaver, SOHC Secretary, and Lynn Wells, SOHC Director.

The Support Our Health Care Society of Princeton, British Columbia has reviewed the provisions of the Trans Pacific Partnership. Our organizational purpose and therefore interests lie in the area of health services, broadly defined. Therefore, our remarks deal only with this specific topic.

1. We note that the Global Affairs Canada summary of the Agreement states that “Excludes certain types of services in Canada because their protection is fundamental to our social fabric, including health, public education, and other social service sectors and activities. Excluding these services protects flexibility for Canadian policy objectives in these areas.”

This would appear to be possibly contradictory to the preceding statement that “Ensures that measures relating to qualification requirements and procedures, technical standards and licensing requirements do not create unnecessary service trade barriers. “ Read more »

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SOHC Discussion Paper

Developing an Improved and Sustainable Health Care Model for Princeton, B.C
Support Our Health Care has released a discussion paper in order to get feedback from the community, politicians and professionals about the state of local healthcare and what the long term solutions should be.
Download PDF Here