Foreign purchase of BC long term care facilities

On November 28, the Toronto Globe & Mail reported that Chinese based Anbang Insurance Group intends to purchase Retirement Concepts, a BC based corporation that operates 24 long term care facilities in Canada, including the Summerland Seniors Village in the Okanagan.

Support Our Health Care questions this proposed sale and supports organizations like the BC Health Coalition, Friends of Medicare and the Hospital Employees Union in their efforts to stop this takeover bid, estimated to be over a billion dollars. Under federal law, any deal larger than $600 million triggers a review under the government’s Investment Review Division.

As stated by Andra Azocar, Executive Director of Friends of Medicare, “This sale is another alarming sign of how private continuing care decisions are driven by profit motives instead of what’s best for patient care. A distant and multi-billion dollar insurance company is about the exact opposite of who we need responsible for the care of our loved ones . . . we must insist that this sale be rejected so that we can refocus our system on care that is responsive and driven by local needs, and ultimately by the public sector.”

Hospital Employees Union (HEU) secretary-business manager, Jennifer Whiteside says that “Selling BC seniors care facilities to an offshore insurance company is not in the interest of BC health care workers, seniors, or our health care system.”

Innovation, Science and Economic Development Minister Navdeep Bains said in the House of Commons last Tuesday, that he will scrutinize the takeover to ensure it’s not hurting Canada. “These are done on a case-by-case basis and, over all, our objective is very clear. We are going to do what is the net benefit for Canada. We are going to make sure that we advance our national interest and when we make a decision, we will make that public.”

BC Health Coalition co-chairs, Edith MacHaffie and Rick Turner, have sent a letter to the Minister asking to have the timelines for the review of this deal extended “in order for interested stakeholders and the public to prepare and share their views on this proposed takeover.”

The SOHC Executive has also sent a letter to Minister Navdeep Bains outlining our concerns over this deal and supporting others in their call to extend the review timeline to allow information to be shared and public concerns heard.

For more information, click on the following links:
Hospital Employees Union oppose takeover deal

Friends of Medicare call for Ottawa to reject proposed sale of Retirement Concepts

Globe and Mail article

SOHC letter to Navdeep Bains

BCHC letter to Navdeep Singh Bains

letter in the Comox Valley Record

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