How can we improve Canada’s health system? Blaming the professionals who deliver care defies logic.
You may be very surprised to learn that one prominent journalist says the biggest obstacles to health care reform are the people who deliver it – or more specifically, their unions and associations.
Globe and Mail public health reporter Andre Picard comes back to so-called “vested interests” over and over again in a monograph (The Path To Health Care Reform: Policy and Politics) published last fall by the business-sponsored Conference Board of Canada.
Picard says of health care reform: “those who stand to lose the most are principally health professionals – specifically, the organizations that represent them, from unions to professional organizations.”
As such, so his theory goes, “they have a lot of power right now, and they’re not going to give up without a fight.”
Why would health professionals lose from health reform? Picard never says, although makes vague references to the poaching of professionals that is supposedly driving labour costs up. Really?
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Dr. David Goldbloom and Andre Picard speak about media guidelines for suicide coverage as part of a December 12th Longwood’s Forum.
If the audience was expecting a debate, they may have left disappointed.
Globe and Mail reporter Andre Picard and Dr. David Goldbloom, Chair of the Mental Health Commission of Canada, spoke about the media’s portrayal of mental health during a Longwood’s Breakfast with the Chiefs forum December 12.
While billed as being about mental health, much of the discussion centered around whether media reporting of suicide prompts copycat actions.
The issue is particularly timely given the Vancouver School Board has challenged the media in its reporting on the death of Amanda Todd, the teen who took her life after experiencing on-line bullying. The Board has suggested the media follow guidelines established by the Canadian Psychiatric Association for reporting on suicide.
Picard challenged the science used by the CPA to establish the guidelines and suggested that the “hush hush” attitude towards suicide actually created more stigma.
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Roy Romanow, the former Chair fo the Commission of the Future of Health in Canada, will be the keynote speaker November 30 at a free Canadian Health Coalition event in Ottawa.
The two-hour event at the Fairmount Chateau Laurier includes two panel discussions, one looking at threats to Medicare, the other looking at what the way forward should be.
Globe and Mail health reporter Andre Picard will moderate the panel discussions.
Panelists include Diana Gibson (Parkland Institute, Alberta); Dr. Marie- Claude Goulet (Médecins Québécois pour le Régime Public); Allan Maslove and Marc-André Gagnon (Carleton University School of Public Policy and Administration); Natalie Mehra (Ontario Health Coalition); John Abbott (Health Council of Canada); and Dr. Michael Rachlis (Independent policy analyst) and Sharon Scholzberg-Gray (Past-President Canadian Healthcare Association).
This event takes place in the Adam Room of the Chateau Laurier in Ottawa. Not in Ottawa? You can watch it streamed live at http://healthcoalition.ca . To register to attend this free event, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call 819-770-1626.