The Fallacy of Federal Advantage in Delivering Pharmacare

Posted on in Health Policy Context

Source: — Authors:

… the 2019 federal budget proposed the creation of a new Canadian Drug Agency to conduct health technology assessments, negotiate prices and listing terms… That is, the new agency could substantially lower the national drug budget even if the federal and provincial/territorial governments are not able to agree on a single-payer government plan… Prescription drugs are an increasingly large component of total healthcare costs, and should be integrated with other areas of health spending and policies to control it.

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Child & Family

Tories slash $17M from services for victims of violence

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Ontario’s Progressive Conservative government has cut the budget for financial supports to help victims of violence by more than $17 million… At $163.4 billion, Finance Minister Vic Fedeli’s budget is the largest in Ontario history. But MacLeod’s department took the biggest hit, down $892 million from last year’s estimate of $17.5 billion. That was due mostly due to changes Ontario’s social assistance programs, Ontario Works and the Ontario Disability Support Program.


Canadian study identifies five most vulnerable groups for FASD

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The study identified five high-prevalence groups: children in care; people in correctional service custody; people in special education services; people using specialized services for developmental disabilities or psychiatric care; and Indigenous populations. The study was designed to help improve prevalence estimates and predictions with an eye to better public policy, and to allow for better planning and budgeting of health care, community and social services response.


Education

No, professors shouldn’t collect a six-figure pension – on top of a six-figure salary

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Nearly one in 10 Ontario university professors is over the age of 65. As of 2016, these professors were earning, on average, $184,947 a year. Moreover, because federal legislation requires all taxpayers to start drawing down their retirement savings at the age of 71, septuagenarian professors can collect a six-figure pension on top of a six-figure salary… No one is stopping senior scholars from writing academic papers, or teaching ECON 101. The debate is over how much they should be paid for doing so.


CAUT condemns Heritage report on copyright

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The Canadian Association of University Teachers (CAUT) is alarmed by recommendations released this week by the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage regarding copyright law in Canada. The report, though produced by a committee mandated to take into consideration the broad range of stakeholder interests — including creators, the public, educators and students — focuses entirely on the interests of big publishers and their lobby groups.


Employment

Traditional Economics Has Absolutely Screwed Us

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Conventional capitalism is failing because it considers the services provided by nature such as oxygen and food production as free and limitless. Only an economist could fail to see how a collapsing biosphere might be bad for business… The UN study found that $325 billion in subsides shoveled at the fossil fuel industry around the world actually result in $5 trillion in costs to degraded natural systems on which our survival depends.


Ford’s deficit hype conceals Ontario’s dirty secret

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… Ontario already has the lowest program spending (per capita) among Canada’s 10 provinces — before Ford’s spending cuts click in… While the provincial average for revenue (per capita) is $12,373, Ontario only collects $10,415 (per capita) — a significantly smaller amount… And Ford is making the problem worse by cutting taxes a further $3.6 billion a year… Ford’s measures — despite his claim to be acting “for the people” — redirect resources from ordinary people to corporations and the rich.


Equality

There’s nothing moderate about this Ontario budget

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… the cuts are large. But so, too, are the tax cuts that rob the province of billions… the government took billions of dollars from the budget. That lost revenue, plus new corporate tax breaks, will drain an average of $3.6 billion a year from provincial coffers over the next three years. That money could have stayed in vital programs; it could have reduced the deficit. It did neither… But as a public relations exercise designed to conceal bad news, the budget did its job.


Provincial legal aid cuts are senseless economic and social policy

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Defending the cuts, the attorney general states “there are two stakeholders that must always be front-of-mind: the clients LAO serves and the taxpayers who pay the bills.” But neither stakeholder is served by the cuts. The cuts certainly do not serve legal aid clients… The cuts also do not serve taxpayers… The court system will be further weighed down with subsequent appeals in these matters to fix the damage caused by initial subpar representation.


Health

How Ontario’s cuts to public health will hurt our patients

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We are a group of resident physicians – doctors training to be family physicians and specialists – in Ontario… we have been taught the importance of disease prevention as one of the most important tools to keep people well and out of hospital… If your government truly is committed to ending “hallway medicine” and providing the possibility of healthier lives, we urge you to reconsider the proposed significant budget cuts to Public Health.


The Fallacy of Federal Advantage in Delivering Pharmacare

Source: — Authors:

… the 2019 federal budget proposed the creation of a new Canadian Drug Agency to conduct health technology assessments, negotiate prices and listing terms… That is, the new agency could substantially lower the national drug budget even if the federal and provincial/territorial governments are not able to agree on a single-payer government plan… Prescription drugs are an increasingly large component of total healthcare costs, and should be integrated with other areas of health spending and policies to control it.


Inclusion

Ford still doesn’t understand the difference between charity and government

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Almost a year into the job, Ford still doesn’t seem to understand the difference between an act of personal charity and the necessary role of government. If Ford is a decent citizen who spends his personal time doing good deeds in the community, that’s really great. But it doesn’t absolve him, as premier, of leading a government with policies that help people, rather than hurt them.


Canadian Jean Vanier’s charity work helped improve conditions for people with disabilities

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Vanier argued that the Western culture of individualism which values beauty, money and success, also creates a gap between the healthy and the disabled. ”We have a fear of accompanying people who are weak … They are seen as a financial and social liability,” he said… He argued that the greatest threat to peace is a widening gap between rich and poor, between strong and weak. But rather than urging people to open their wallets to the less fortunate, Vanier asked them to open their hearts.


Social Security

The view from the ER: Ford is chopping up the safety net

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On any given day, a small number of the patients seen in our ED are high-frequency users, many of whom have complex social concerns… Addressing… the problems of so many of my patients, requires real commitment from governments to support the social determinants of health – the social, economic and environmental factors that determine individual and population health. Instead, the government has promised cuts to public health, education, legal aid and social services.


Why is retiring later a good idea? Because 65 is the new 55

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Canadian Institute of Actuaries suggests… Shifting the target retirement age for CPP and Old Age Security from 65 to 67, with a commensurate 14.4-per-cent boost in the monthly pension… Allowing Canadians to defer OAS and CPP until as late as 75, with a big boost in monthly payments as incentive… Encouraging employers to choose 67, rather than 65, as the target retirement date for new pension-plan members


Governance

Why our politics pits rural parties against urban parties

Rahsaan Maxwell, a political scientist at the University of North Carolina… finds that cities’ less “nationalist” and more “cosmopolitan” politics are caused less by the transformative effects of city life and more by the sorts of people who move from rural areas to cities. Those people tend to be even more cosmopolitan-minded than people who spend their entire lives in cities. On the other hand… people who move from cities to rural areas are not, and do not become, supporters of country parties and their views.


Toronto, Ontario and Ottawa need to close election spending loopholes

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Premier Doug Ford exposed a vulnerability in Ontario’s laws by using his long-finished and debt-free leadership campaign to continue to raise money… Ford has also exposed the inadequacies of federal campaign advertising laws with his anti-carbon tax TV commercials… Ford also says he’s doing nothing but following “the rules.”… These rule-skirting, self-serving moves do nothing but contribute to voter cynicism about politics and politicians.