Don’t let our health care system be destroyed

Duncan – March 31 was the day the Harper government, (it used to be the Canadian Government) started to dismantle our national health care.

Equalization payments to the provinces are being eliminated and replaced by a system that ignores the demographics of the provinces. Thirty-six billion dollars are also being cut from healthcare funding. Some provinces will survive the cuts to their health care but others will not. The belief that all Canadians deserve equal access health care regardless of income is disappearing.

At the same time there is a push by a few, Dr. Brian Day, in particular, to establish for profit clinics. One of the arguments he has used is that by allowing those who can afford to pay for private care in a for profit facility to do so, the facility is saving taxpayers’ money.

Does anyone actually believe that is the purpose of a for profit, private facility? Does Dr. Day really expect us to believe that this is his purpose? A for profit facility is built for one reason – to make a profit. All health care workers deserve to be compensated fairly for their training and ability but to profit from someone’s illness is wrong! An investor only invests in a for profit facility to make more money.

The health care system can be improved of course. If the same money, energy and time were put into working on ways to improve it as they are putting into ways to dismantle it, we could have a very good system.

I’ve heard some people, those who weren’t around before our publicly funded system, say that we should try a two-tiered system. People who could afford to pay for procedures privately should be able to do that.

Who decides whether a patient can afford to be able to jump the line? The publicly funded system was established so that people would not become bankrupted by medical expenses. Many people did. Many people will again do so with a for profit private system as they will be pressured into using it for a child or parent. Who could blame them? They should not have to do it. We can’t let our system be destroyed.

Trudy Thorgeirson

Duncan