Why We Should Think Twice Before We Institutionalize National Pharmacare

July 17, 2015 11:30 am
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Amalgamation always seems like a good idea.  Greater Victoria has 13 municipalities, 13 councils, oodles of separate fire and police departments and multiple separate teams of garbage-persons, road fixers, parks maintainers and others that you need to keep our cities humming.  Which makes everyone ask:  Wouldn’t it be easier (and […]

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Provincial Health Ministers Right to Push for National Pharmacare Program–But What Kind?

July 14, 2015 10:12 am
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Quebec’s outdated drug coverage policies should not be model for rest of Canada In spite of very high expenditures for drug coverage, one in 10 Canadians cannot afford to fill their prescriptions. The current patchwork of public and private plans across the country means that Canadians are covered for their […]

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What Do Canadians Need from Pension Reform?

10:09 am
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A gentle policy nudge to enhance coverage and pension contributions—here’s how.  Pension reform continues to hold interest across the country, especially given the willingness of the federal Conservatives to at least talk about expanding the Canada Pension Plan (CPP). Pundits and politicos are weighing in now with blunt talk of […]

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Canadians Care About Healthcare—So Why Don’t We See More Health Policy Coverage in the News?

July 8, 2015 10:03 am
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For the last 30 years or so, Canadians have repeatedly flagged healthcare as the most important national concern and the issue they want their political leaders to prioritize. Surveys and studies and polls and panels—there have been plenty—all come up with the same finding: Canadians care about healthcare. That doesn’t mean […]

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Aging In The Right Place Is What Many Canadian Seniors Want And Need

June 29, 2015 10:08 am
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Here’s how to make it happen A shift in thinking on seniors’ care issues is taking place across the country, and it’s making our government leaders sit up and take notice. The opportunity to provide cutting edge seniors’ care has never been more within reach. Worldwide, there is a movement […]

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Four Things you Should Know About the Pending Charter Challenge Against Medicare

June 25, 2015 10:00 am
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A long-running dispute between Dr. Brian Day, the co-owner of Cambie Surgeries Corporation and the British Columbia government may finally be resolved in the BC Supreme Court this year – and the ruling could transform the Canadian health system from coast to coast. The case emerged in response to an […]

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We Have Built a Sickness Care System Rather Than A Health System

June 24, 2015 11:58 am
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We have designed that system for the convenience of practitioners, not patients: Convocation speech delivered to graduating MDs at the University of Manitoba on the receipt of an honorary doctorate. Mr. Chancellor, Mr. President, distinguished guests, soon-to-be MDs and their deeply indebted family members. I’m touched and humbled to receive an […]

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Pros and Cons of an Expanded Canada Pension Plan

June 23, 2015 10:00 am
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A new report came out this week that reiterates what we’ve heard from other sources a few times now: Canadians aren’t saving nearly enough for retirement. The Deputy Chief Economist of the CIBC warns that without pension reform now, younger workers today will see a steep decline in living standards […]

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The Real Costs of Informal Caregiving in Canada

June 15, 2015 11:13 am
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National strategy needed for unpaid caregivers in the workplace The phenomenon is not exactly marginal: according to a recently released government report, one in every three workers in Canada is assisting a chronically disabled person–many of them seniors–with transportation, household maintenance or day-to-day tasks. The 6.1 million employed workers who […]

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The Other Drug Problem in Canada’s Cities

June 11, 2015 12:05 pm
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How Canada’s piecemeal pharmaceutical drug insurance coverage costs Canadian cities—and taxpayers—plenty Canada’s cities face a number of problems: traffic, housing, crime, infrastructure—the list goes on. Prescription drugs are one of these problems—one that is costing local governments as much as $500 million every year. How so? Municipalities, like most employers, […]

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Why this U.S. Doctor is Moving to Canada

June 3, 2015 12:08 pm
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I’m a U.S. family physician who has decided to relocate to Canada. The hassles of working in the dysfunctional health care “system” in the U.S. have simply become too intense. I’m not alone. According to a physician recruiter in Windsor, Ont., over the past decade more than 100 U.S. doctors […]

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The Fletcher Effect

June 2, 2015 12:10 pm
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I like Stephen Fletcher. Our brief encounters, typically in airports or the occasional public event, are always friendly and cordial. It is hard not to admire him. Despite quadriplegia, he has found the strength and determination to serve his country as a Member of Parliament, at various times holding appointments […]

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Canada has Mixed Wait Time Results in Health Care

May 27, 2015 12:35 pm
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We need governments to promote best practices across the country and improve patient outcomes Wait times have long been a source of concern for Canadians, and in some jurisdictions, remain a significant problem. Recently the Canadian Institutes of Health Information (CIHI) released its report for 2015. There is both encouraging […]

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Is it Fair to Make a Public Appeal for a Live Organ Donor?

May 25, 2015 1:18 pm
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The public response to the appeal on behalf of Eugene Melnyk, owner of the Ottawa Senators hockey team, for a liver donor has been a heart-warming demonstration of the generosity of our community. Fortunately, a donor was found and the transplant was performed in time to save his life. But […]

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Pharmacare is Good for Business

May 5, 2015 10:00 am
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Repeatedly over the past 50 years, national commissions and inquiries have recommended that Canadian medicare include universal, public coverage of prescription drugs. So far, no government has acted on this, creating profound inequities and inefficiencies in our health care system. But more than that: the lack of universal pharmacare is […]

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Is It Finally Time for a National Drug Plan?

April 28, 2015 11:06 am
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A new study in the Canadian Medical Association Journal with health economist Steve Morgan as lead author argues a national universal care drug program would not result in substantial tax increases. Indeed, such a plan reduces public and private spending on prescription drugs by $7.3 billion annually – or by […]

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Five Things Everyone Should Know about the Relationship Between Poverty and Health in Canada

April 27, 2015 11:05 am
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With a federal election on the horizon, certain high level policy topics are bound to make the headlines beyond the personalities of the political leaders: the economy, energy prices, jobs prospects even climate change. But what seems surprisingly absent from the political hustings so far has been a fulsome discussion […]

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