Opposing Fraser Institute fine but Minister should focus on 2014
NDP Health Critic Gerry Rogers (MHA, St. John’s Centre) says she is glad to see the Minister of Health and Community Services defending the province’s health care workers against the claims of a recently-issued report from the Fraser Institute. Rogers says she is hoping the Minister will demonstrate the same energy in the much more important challenge our health care system will face in the coming months.
The current health funding agreement between Ottawa and the provinces expires next year. The Harper government has proposed that, effective in 2017, increases in funding will mirror Canada’s economic growth rate rather than being a consistent level which allows for long-term planning.
The federal Conservatives also want health funding to be done solely on a per capita basis, which would likely create a health care squeeze in provinces with a higher population of seniors than others.
“Newfoundland and Labrador, along with the other Atlantic Provinces and British Columbia, has a much higher proportion of seniors than, for example, Alberta,” Rogers said today. “We must be able to care for all our citizens, and it is imperative that our health minister be saying so in no uncertain terms at the national level at every chance she gets.”
Rogers pointed to the age-adjusted formula proposed and supported by other provinces as a possible solution.
“One of the basic things that defines us as Canadians is our universal healthcare system,” she said. “I hope our minister, and our premier, are prepared to defend that as strongly as they are willing to condemn the Fraser Institute’s faulty methodology.”