Jack Layton is Onto Something Where Medicare is Concerned
Layton maintains that Canadians need more medical doctors and nurses and he’s right as rain about that. I know of people who regularly visit walk-in clinics for their ills because they cannot secure a regular family physician. Talk about dangerous and inept health care. The numbers of patients in Canada’s medical health care system are increasing exponentially, now that Baby Boomers are well past middle age. Our seniors are living longer thanks to improved medical technology. This means both seniors and Baby Boomers are needing more medical services and assistive technology in the 21st century than in the history of Canadian health care. And seniors’ health care costs 5 times more than a younger patient. If Harper is re-elected with a majority house, Canadian health care is in serious trouble. Article: CBC News In Depth: the baby boomers tab
From a more optimistic viewpoint, a Vancouver-based gerontologist who sits on the World Health Organization’s panel on aging and health, Gloria Gutman, stated that panic about the increased need for senior citizens’ health care is “way off base…Not everybody’s going to fall apart.” Obviously not. But “everybody” isn’t falling apart now and there is still a medical care crisis in this country. She says there will be advances in medicine making for quicker, cheaper treatments including treatments that will stop dementia. video: Not so great moments: Health Care
video: Canada’s Fittest Senior at 92
While that sounds hopeful it seems to me to be idealistic. Preventing dementia is wonderful but a person doesn’t have to suffer from dementia to require a personal support worker and ongoing visits to a physician. I am certain of that fact. I see it regularly in the elderly retirement community where I temporarily reside. Unless of course we find a cure for high blood pressure, type II diabetes, cardiac problems, hypertension, arthritis and cancer within the next 10 years. Then I will fully support Gutman’s perspective on aging and health care.
video: Question Period Jack Layton
And speaking of advances in medicine, if our worthy PM isn’t allowing for a realistic budget for medical research then how are we going to fund it? The research scientists who work on a “cure” (or at least finding a pre-emptive strike) for cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure, and all manner of diseases and medical ailments, can’t work for free anymore than you or I. Or the PM himself, of course. Consider the costs in medical research: laboratory fees; salaries; equipment and medical experimentation, to name just a few. We need to invest millions, even 1 billion annually into medical research if we are going to see the type of gains Gutman has suggested.
video: Jack Layton Reacts to Harper’s Budget
I doubt I will toss my hat into the NDP ring this election, but it’s good news that Layton has scored 50,000 more voters in Quebec. I’d like Layton to have a voice in the Harper House of Horrors. Pitting these two extremist groups against one another might accomplish what Ignatieff seems unable or unwilling to promise doing during this campaign: extract the grain of truth from both parties and insist they meet somewhere near the middle. video: Not so great moments: Corporate Giveaways
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