Premiers must take this opportunity to transform the Medicare system or let Harper destroy our public healthcare system

(July 24, 2013 - Richmond Hill, ON) Today SEIU Healthcare, Canada’s largest healthcare union, called on the Council of First Ministers to take up the challenge of reforming healthcare in order to save it from a privatized, fee for service model favoured by the Steven Harper government.

“Make no mistake,” said Emanuel Carvalho, Executive Vice-President, SEIU Healthcare. “The impending funding crisis in healthcare is being manufactured by the Stephen Harper government. It’s a crisis designed to kill Medicare and the principle of public healthcare for all. It’s all about profit, not helping people—real care for Canadians.”

As the ten year Health Accord is about to expire in 2014, the STEPHEN Harper Government has provided no roadmap for future health funding, and even worse, has proposed $36 Billion in funding cuts.

In an era of aging population and limited funds, SEIU Healthcare advocates for protecting Medicare to:

  • Ensure the system is better managed by moving money from the bottom line (hospital CEOs and administrators making hundreds of thousands of dollars in salaries and benefits) to the front line;
  • Optimize healthcare workers’ value by using their skills to the maximum effect and full scope of practice;
  • Eliminate waste through bulk purchases of benefit packages; and
  • Institute a national homecare program to both manage costs and ensure Canadians get the right care at the right time by the right healthcare professional.

“We must take advantage of the system synergies already in place,” concluded Carvalho. “Our members are on the frontlines of healthcare every day. They’re willing to do their part to protect Medicare, sharing knowledge, experience and solutions. Now we need the Premiers to do their part and take on this challenge on behalf of all Canadians.”

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