Archive for the ‘Health Debates’ Category

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Doctors’ perspective on billings in Ontario

Wednesday, July 10th, 2019

Focusing on how much each health care provider bills or earns without context, and without a broader plan to address system-wide issues, may result in additionally fragmented care and stress on Ontario’s health care system. Ontarians need professional health care providers with a range of skills to help reduce wait times. No health care provider wants to see longer wait times or more fragmented care.

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Make pharmacare a priority in the federal election

Tuesday, July 9th, 2019

The upcoming election debate on this issue should address key implementation issues including: Identifying the goalposts and the mechanism for achieving the desired outcome. The role of the federal government, subnational governments and the private sector. Who pays for the incremental costs and how will it be financed. The mechanism to get buy-ins from all subnational governments. A universal system only works if all subnational governments participate in it.

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Having better health care than the U.S. shouldn’t be good enough for Canadians

Sunday, July 7th, 2019

We need to stop settling for “better-than-America” and aim for “as good as much of Europe.” We also need to realize that there are ways to improve the system that are not either “just throw ever-more public dollars at the problems” and “burn medicare to the ground and pay for everything out of pocket.” If we ignore them while they’re still fixable — when the economy is good, there’s no weird epidemics afoot and the full impact of the upcoming demographic shift hasn’t yet hit — we’ll pay for it later.

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Time for Ontario to make drug company payments public

Tuesday, July 2nd, 2019

When pharmaceutical companies dole out millions of dollars to doctors, hospitals, universities and others working in the public health care system, it should be done in a public way to maintain trust that it’s all above board. And not just for 10 big drug companies, but all of them. Ontario has already passed legislation to make that happen — if only the Doug Ford government would enact the regulations to bring it into force…

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Transparency on what doctors bill OHIP informs the health-care debate

Friday, June 28th, 2019

The public benefit that comes from greater transparency around OHIP billings is clear. It will help to inform the debate about how Ontario spends its health care dollars and whether the current payment structure overvalues some medical services at the expense of others… Are we achieving the best health care outcomes for the dollars we spend? Is there a better way? … Opening up the system to public scrutiny can only help to build a stronger health-care system for patients and doctors alike.

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To bolster health, would basic income — not pharmacare — make more sense?

Tuesday, June 25th, 2019

… shouldn’t the priority of policy-makers be to ensure that all Canadians can afford necessities such as food and housing, not just prescription drugs? … Affordable sickness care is important, especially if you’re sick. But the way to keep people healthier longer is to ensure that they have a decent income, a roof over their heads, healthy food, a good education, a sound physical environment and sense of belonging.

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Yes, to national pharmacare – because we already paid for it

Tuesday, June 25th, 2019

We are paying, in effect, three times: through federal research grants, through disease-focused charities, and then at the pharmacy. A national pharmacare program could change this if… the cost of a drug over the life of its patent was calculated to recognize the public support its development received. Manufacturers would submit a funding history with a tentative pricing. A fair rate of return would be permitted for the life of a patent based on that information.

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Why universal pharmacare will help get Canada’s drug costs under control — and why Big Pharma hates it

Saturday, June 22nd, 2019

It might be more accurate to say we can’t afford to go without it… The Hoskins report estimates an annual savings of about $5 billion in total drug spending once universal pharmacare is fully implemented… And it would strengthen employers’ ability to hire and properly compensate employees. Employer contributions to drug plans generally reduce worker pay.

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Pharmacare today, like medicare 50 years ago, makes sense

Friday, June 14th, 2019

In terms of cost overall, most experts agree that a universal, single-pay system would save money for Canadians… But a universal public program would also shift costs from individuals and employers to governments… Canadians would pay more in taxes for universal drug coverage. But this tax increase would be more than compensated for by the out-of-pocket, administrative and cost savings associated with the move to public pharmacare.

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New report provides the Trudeau Liberals with a blueprint for pharmacare

Friday, June 14th, 2019

There’s true pharmacare, as laid out by the advisory council chaired by Ontario’s former health minister, Eric Hoskins. Then there’s a paler version that seeks only to fill in the gaps by providing coverage for those who currently have none… Canadians already pay more for drugs than they do for doctors’ services and… drug costs are rising at an unsustainable 6.5 per cent per year. That has a big impact on both workplace plans and government drug benefits for seniors and the poor.

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