Apparently regulating fast food companies to improve population health is not an option for Health Canada, who recently told CBC News that the “fragile economic recovery” is an important consideration.
Health Canada was responding to a report by the Canadian Medical Association Journal which noted sodium levels were higher in Canada’s fast food outlets than their counterparts in other countries.
The Chicken McNuggets you eat in Canada have more than twice as much salt as the McNuggets in Britain. While Canadian fast food outlets brought in salads in response to growing health concerns, these salads have higher levels of salt than any other nation. Combined with high fat levels in the dressing, you might as well have had the fries.
This week ICES – the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences — issued what is effectively a wake-up call on Ontario’s spiralling diabetes epidemic. Hint: there may be a connection between these two stories.
Cuts to outpatient rehab services are short sighted says Dr. Mark Bayley, author of a report on stroke services released this week by the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences and theOntarioand Canadian Stroke Networks.
The lack of outpatient and CCAC rehab services mean many patients who would normally be able to go home end up in more expensive long term care facilities Bayley recently told the Toronto Star.
According to the 2011 Ontario Stroke Evaluation Report, patients are receiving far less visits than recommended from physiotherapists, occupational therapists and speech language pathologists.
Best practices suggest two visits per week from each of these professions. Instead over a two month period patients are averaging between three and four visits in total from each.
The report also notices considerable differences between the LHINs, calling for a more standardized approach for access to, and outcomes for, the rehabilitation sector.
InOntario only one in three stroke victims arrive at hospital in time to be considered for therapy that would dramatically improve outcomes.
While there was a reduction in overall wait times to stroke services, the report says there was also a reduction in access to inpatient rehabilitation among severly disable stroke patients.
The report also recommends the Ministry of Health Promotion continue to fund the warning signs of stroke television campaign.
The report did note that those taken to specialized stroke centers were more likely to receive care based on stroke best practices.
Between 2003/04 and 2009/10 there was also a reduced rate of emergency department visits and hospital stays for stroke or transient ischemic attack (TIA). TIAs are usually involve short term stroke-like symptoms and are considered to be a warning sign of a stroke.