Well, it’s here. I guess the question is how the federal government is going to respond.
Now for me, this issue seems really clear cut. (Naturally) The issue is not whether someone with the financial means should ought to be able to pay for their medical procedures to be expedited; but rather, whether someone without the means to pay a premium for their care should now wait longer for their procedure to be done because the one doctor that is performing the procedures is busy doing the private paid procedure.
The bottom line is:
1) Practioners in the private "for profit" sector, should not be able to double dip and work in the public sector also.
2) Practioners in the private "for profit" sector, should be required to work a set term in the public sector.
3) Practioners in the private "for profit" sector, if they do not fulfill their public sector term of service, then those individuals should be required to cover the full cost of their post secondary education. Post secondary education costs are subsidized by the general public through taxation. Individuals choosing not to contribute back into the public that supported them should not be eligible to reap the benefits of the publics support.
4) Insurance companies that choose to provide coverage for medical procedures should be required to keep costs for delivery of such procedures separate from general insurance costs so that the paying public does not absorb or subsidize delivery of those private procedures.
5) Insurance companies should be required to provide "blind" coverage, as in the public sector delivery of health, so that they may not pick and choose whom they provide coverage for and not just leave costly treatments and procedures for the public purse to fund.
6) Legislation specifying clear protection of patient medical history and records should be enacted such as:
– Prohibition on compilation of statistically patient history, treatment, and analysis with respect to third parties. i.e. pharmaceutical companies.
– Prohibition on patient history to be used to limit or refuse other general insurance coverage. i.e. life insurance, short/long term disability, etc.
– Prohibition on the disclosure of records to foreign governments primarily in those instances where the insuring companies are owned by a foreign company.
– Prohibition on access to records or statistic’s for individuals that utilize the public care system.
7) Private insurers should be required on a regular basis to transfer patient care records and billing information to the public heath system in the interests of protecting the public system from fraud and to maintain a unified comprehensive patient care history.
– Costs for maintaining, amalgamating and auditing the private care records should be borne solely and in its entirety by the private insurers.
8) Private sector facilities/practioners should be required to pay a private practioner fee based upon services performed that is directly payable to the public heath systems general revenues.
9) Requirement for employees in the private sector to be protected by mandating union enrolment based upon their particular field or specialization.
10) Prohibition on public equipment, resources, or facilities being used in the private delivery of procedures or services.
Canadians must not allow our community values to be usurped by short sighted politicians and individuals with greedy self interests. If private sector "for profit" delivery of services cannot be stopped then there must be measures implemented to protect those that do not have the financial means to ensure (insure) their health.
Although the delivery of healthcare is supposed to be managed by the provincial governments, it has become abundantly clear that the provinces are unable to manage it. The majority of Canadians believe access to Healthcare is a "right" of all Canadians. Maybe it is time for something that is supposed to be national and universal, to be delivered and managed on a Federal (national) level. Just the elimination in the redundancy of administration and the pooling of resources would save the public sector "Billions" of dollars. Maybe there should be a "4th Way" healthcare proposal…
(Comments Published on Friday, March 3, 2006 — THE MEDICINE HAT NEWS B11)