Saturday, July 11, 2009

IHA chair backs two-tier care, less support for frail seniors

Interior Health Authority chair Norm Embree told the Kelowna Daily Courier this week that he sees nothing wrong with two-tier heath care. Why shouldn't a person with money be able to buy faster, better treatment if they're sick or injured, he said? (Aside from the provincial and federal laws that say health care should be available based on medical need - that one sick six-year-old shouldn't be treated while a neighbour suffers just because of an accident of birth.)
Embree also said he doesn't see why the health system should provide residential care for sick or frail seniors who can't live on their own.
I wondered if he would retreat. But Embree repeated the positions in an interview with the Kamloops Daily News here.
And columnist Susan Duncan outlines why pushing old people onto the streets is a bad idea here.
Embree also confirmed cuts to services are coming because of underfunding by the province. Expect to hear more on that in the next few days as Health Minister Kevin Falcon gives the health authorities their marching orders.


Gazetteer said...

Perhaps Mr. Falcon might like to consider 'Medical Expeditions'.

This is a very, very, very dangerous and steep slope/cliff we are gazing over.


Anonymous said...

Actually Paul you are paraphrasing Embree incorrectly. What Embree pointed out about residential senior’s care is that it is not a requirement under the Canada Health Act and there are significant costs and expectations that go along with providing that type of care.

DPL said...

He sounds like a real prince of a man and has no concerns for the day he ends up old or frail. Maybe he is one of the "Put em on a ice flow and your problems are cheaply solved"sort of fellow. He should fit right in with Gordo's gang. Nice salary for a idiot.

Anonymous said...

Actually DPL that is not what Norm Embree said at all. Unfortunately when you have an irresponsible journalist who would rather add sensationalist editorial slant rather than accurately quoting what in fact was really said it is very easy to misinterpret the comments that were made. Hopefully Mr. Willcocks is proud of what he has done here.

off-the-radar said...

you must be pusing the right buttons with your columns, please keep them coming! There's now a couple of trolls lurking in your comments sections. Dawn Steele blows 'em out of the water though.

Hey trollies, please go read Susan Duncan's column.

Anonymous said...

I would be happy to read Susan Duncan’s column. Please provide a link as I am not familiar with the column or publication. I am not certain why so many of you NDP supporters think it is acceptable to not only misquote; but in this case deliberately inaccurately paraphrase someone’s comments as Willcocks has done in this case..

It seems as long as Willcocks does so in support of your NDP interests it becomes acceptable to many of you.

Anonymous said...

...and here come the PABbots to work the ref. You know, they attack one of the few actual middle-of-the-road columnists as being a radical lefty in order to either marginalize him or get him to write from the right. It's a clever trick. Bald-faced dishonest, but clever.

DPL said...

Gordo can afford to pay folks to check up on just what certain columnists are writing. Almost forgot. Gordo doesn't pay for the trolls, we do.

Dawn Steele said...

We're paying these so-called professionals $200K+ a year to run our health regions and yet newspaper columnists have to explain to them the principles of the Canada Health Act and why 2-tier health care is not an option??

As for the seniors' issue, you could argue 'til the cows come home about whether all of the seniors mandate should stay under Health or whether part should get shifted to another ministry. But what does the latter solve? We're not going to put them out on the ice floes, so we'll still have to pay for it all from the same provincial pool of tax dollars.

If you shifted the residential component to Coleman's Ministry, for example, Coleman would have to take a big chunk of Falcon's budget to cover the extra responsibility, leaving Embree right back where he started. Embree would be obliged to continue funding the geriatric care aspect in any case, so how would having two ministries stumbling over each other to deliver coordinated care offer net savings to taxpayers and/or better service to seniors?

If Embree has a model in mind that would provide the same level of care for the same costs or less, let him present it for discussion - I'm sure lots of people would be extremely grateful. But if he doesn't even understand the Canada Health Act that sets out the guiding principles for doing his job, he's going to have a hard time convincing people he has a clue what he's talking about.

Gazetteer said...


Ms. Duncan's column/editorial is linked to in Mr. Willcocks' original post.

Perhaps missing that little 'detail' says something about the veracity of the commentors' original ad hominem attack.