Tag: Health Care

New Health Minister doesn’t mean better health deal

Although last week’s federal cabinet shuffle generated little excitement here, it was a different story in New Brunswick. There, the surprise appointment as Health minister of Ginette Petitpas Taylor, a rookie backbencher from the Moncton area, created considerable buzz. Aside from the fun fact that the appointment gave the province with 2% of the population 6% of cabinet posts (Trudeau friend and Fisheries minister Dominic LeBlanc is the other New Brunswick cabinet minister) there was the added possibility that the new Health minister would be sympathetic to the health funding concerns of New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and the other...

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Unfulfilled health care promises piling up

During the 2013 provincial election campaign the Liberals made three big health care promises. They were going to amalgamate nine district health authorities into one, improve wait times for hip and knee replacements and ensure a doctor for every Nova Scotian. Since any one would be hesitant to argue against the latter two planks, the promise about replacing the DHAs with a single authority drew most of the fire from their opponents. Pointing to problems that had come from Alberta’s earlier move to a super board, the NDP predicted all sorts of chaos would ensue. But the amalgamation has...

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Cuts in health funding framed as a success

According to reports, wide grins and high fives were the order of the day in the House of Commons on Friday when Health minister Philpott announced that three more provinces – all big ones – had agreed to “take” Ottawa’s “take-it-or-leave-it” new health care deal, leaving only Manitoba as a hold out. The question that came immediately to mind was “why the festivity?” Unless they are deluded into believing that provinces are somehow divorced from the people who live in them the Liberal parliamentarians were essentially congratulating themselves for sticking it to the Canadian people, particularly those living in...

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Campaigning Liberals sowed seeds of health discord

Health transfers crept back into the news this past week with a call by the majority of provinces for a meeting between the premiers and the prime minister to settle the issue left hanging after the pre-Christmas dust-up involving health and finance ministers. It’s hard to predict how things will turn out, but what we’ve seen so far does not reflect well on the Trudeau Liberals. After strutting into the pre-Christmas meeting with a take-it-or-leave-it offer the feds seemed surprised that the provinces and territories (with the regrettable exceptions of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Newfoundland) decided on the...

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Partisanship, austerity behind health deal sellout?

The health funding side deal got a rough ride elsewhere in the country over the holidays, but a relatively mild reception here. Manitoba’s health minister called the pre-Christmas bilateral deals between Ottawa and Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and New Brunswick “shameful.” The Canadian Health Coalition called New Brunswick “the grinch that stole a national health accord.” Locally, Nova Scotia’s opposition leaders did the pro forma denunciations. Conservative Jamie Baillie said Premier McNeil “signed away a lot of hope” with the side deal, and NDP Leader Gary Burrill called it “weasely.” But a seniors advocate gave the double cross a thumbs...

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Richard Starr, The man behind the Point

About Richard

RICHARD STARR has had careers as a journalist, public servant, broadcaster, political staffer and freelance policy adviser. He is author of numerous newspaper and magazine articles, appearing in everything from Atlantic Insight to Atlantic Progress. A lifelong student of Maritime history, Starr is married to playwright and former MP Wendy Lill. They live in Dartmouth.

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