Universal, Single-Payer Public Pharmacare in Canada: An Overview of the Proposed Model

Posted on in Health Policy Context

Source: — Authors: , ,

This bulletin summarizes the key recommendations, which include implementation beginning in 2020; an ability for provinces and territories to opt in; new federal legislation and fiscal transfers to the provinces and territories; a $100 cap on annual household out of pocket spending; a national formulary covering essential medicine by 2022 and comprehensive coverage by 2027; and a dedicated process for assessment and coverage for expensive drugs for rare diseases.

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Child & Family

The Ontario government is wrong to offload autism services onto families

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If the health and well-being of children with autism are really the priority here, then the government should build a needs-based autism service program; invest in the human capital of experts and families with lived experience; utilize available public infrastructure and capacity at regional centres; coordinate services and supports across systems; and bring all of these pieces together by helping guide children and families along their journey toward the best life possible


Gender politics has no place in the classroom

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… now we’re going to find out — courtesy of the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal… whether little girls have the right to maintain their normative, common, practical and realistic world-view and opinion of their own bodies, or whether that is trumped administratively and legally by the existence of the incoherent set of rights inexcusably and forcibly granted to the tiny minority of people who insist that their “identities” are entirely self-generated and absolutely inviolate socially and legally.


Education

The Ford government’s education cuts are setting kids up to fail

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The class cancellations and reductions… have everything to do with the Ford government’s decision to fix a provincial budget problem of its own making on the backs of students. It has substantially increased high school class sizes — from 22 to 28 students on average — and will fund thousands of fewer teacher positions… The Ford government cuts will hurt struggling students, gifted students and generally make school a lot less interesting for all students


OSAP offers have arrived, and students are stunned at the numbers

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Lowering tuition would help all students across the province, the government has argued. But some students say reductions to grants mean they’re actually further behind. The issue has generated a Twitter storm as students posted comparisons of what they will be getting this year compared with last… Ross Romano, the new minister of training, colleges and universities, said the government is committed to restoring financial sustainability to OSAP…


Employment

What if the long-expected boomer retirement boom never happens? The trend is in that direction

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… with lifespans now much longer than was the norm a few decades ago, both working and earning incomes for an eventual retirement are no doubt looked at differently than used to be the case. As well, workers with higher levels of education are more apt to be in the labour market as they age, as compared with those with lower levels of education… older workers may find themselves working, but on contracts or in part-time jobs, which may not be their first choice.


Jim Stanford on Uber and the future of precarious work: ‘It isn’t inevitable’

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… we should be continuing to invest in skills and the knowledge infrastructure… But we also need to be actively nurturing the jobs that people with those skills can most productively do… They only came to Canada because smart policy interventions brought them to Canada. We hustled for them, and we put in place rules. We said to a company like Boeing, for example, ‘you want to sell a bunch of extremely expensive aircraft to Air Canada? Well, you’re going to have to produce something in Canada.’


Equality

In Canada, the gap between the rich and poor remains stable

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… fewer people are climbing up the ladder into the next class — especially people in lower-income brackets. But while fewer people are getting ahead, they are also not falling behind much. Despite all the hand-wringing about worsening inequality and the rich getting richer while the poor get poorer, Canada’s income picture is one of stability, with incremental progress for some.


Governments can afford to make student debt disappear. So why don’t they?

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In 2017-18, the federal government wrote off $6.8 billion in loans. The largest portion of that was $2.6 billion given to Chrysler after the economic crash in 2009… There is at least $14.6 billion per year estimated by the CRA that is withheld by wealthy Canadians. Recovering that money and giving it to Canadians to pay for their higher education would not only be popular, it would also redistribute wealth in an important way.


Health

Government of Canada invests close to $101M in Indigenous health research across the country

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The purpose of the NEIHR Program is to establish a national network of nine centres located across the country focused on capacity development, research and knowledge translation centered on Indigenous Peoples… it will support Indigenous community-based health research based upon the priorities and values of Indigenous Peoples.


Universal, Single-Payer Public Pharmacare in Canada: An Overview of the Proposed Model

Source: — Authors: , ,

This bulletin summarizes the key recommendations, which include implementation beginning in 2020; an ability for provinces and territories to opt in; new federal legislation and fiscal transfers to the provinces and territories; a $100 cap on annual household out of pocket spending; a national formulary covering essential medicine by 2022 and comprehensive coverage by 2027; and a dedicated process for assessment and coverage for expensive drugs for rare diseases.


Inclusion

Why Canadians need to wake up about populism

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Ordered populism… has four key conditions: A declining middle class, wage stagnation and hyper-concentration of wealth at the very top of the system; Major shifts in social values which see more progressive values displacing traditional social conservative values which… produce a cultural backlash by those seeing themselves falling victim to loss of identity and privilege; A growing sense of external threat…; Declining trust in public institutions plus a rise in ideological polarization. All those conditions are present in Canada. They predominate among less-educated males


Cuts to legal aid mean worse health for vulnerable people

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Many of my patients have legal needs that require expert intervention to maintain their social and medical stability… for issues ranging from family discord to accessing disability supports… Neighbourhood legal clinics… are now facing crippling funding cuts… When people are denied the ability to advocate for their legal rights, they are left with high levels of stress, in worse poverty, and in increasingly vulnerable situations. This leaves them in poorer health and puts a higher demand on the health system.


Social Security

Needed: A New Pension Paradigm For Canadians

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… the pension industry must go beyond the tired defined-benefit versus defined-contribution pension debate and focus on the model pension of the future… the authors explain a new pension paradigm that lies between the Classic DB and Classic DC… The common ground would include: Pooling: across multiple employers to reduce risk… Target Benefits: to share risks between sponsors and members… Scale: The optimum asset size would be $1 billion and up… Independent Management Boards


Is ‘Left Over’ Food for ‘Left Behind’ People the Best We Can Do?

Food banks operate as secondary food markets propping up ailing welfare systems… government must ensure domestic compliance under international law with its obligations to “respect, protect and fulfill” these rights ensuring food security for all. That means understanding food insecurity as a problem of income poverty. It must change the public conversation and political discourse from charity to human rights and social justice.


Governance

Why Conservatives have more at stake than Liberals in Canada’s class war

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A society that sneers at tradespeople is a society on its way to the poorhouse… A society that sneers at “so-called experts” is a society on its way to the madhouse… Liberal “virtue-signalling” may flatter the moral vanity of the educated classes, but it is Conservatives who have played the class card more heavily, and with more destructive results. Class wars are always toxic, but class wars organized around “is education a good thing” are suicidal.


How Canadians can strike a better balance between the environment and the economy

… here are six suggestions for restoring balance to the environment-economy debate, which feel particularly necessary in a federal election year when many participants will be surely tempted to succumb to the short-term benefits of simplistic polarization.