Editorial by Jamie Gilcig – We need to make Governments more accountable for Healthcare – Cornwall Ontario – July 26, 2010

Cornwall ON – I don’t know why so many people don’t think about our healthcare system until it’s too late.  Either they or someone they love are the victim of the short comings and decline of Medicare.

I firmly stand on the opinion that we are not being well served by our service.  It’s not the Doctors or nurses fault.  It’s our own.   We don’t challenge our politicians and government loudly enough.  And they won’t do much as it risks votes for a not discernible pay off.

Medicare was created during a Minority government.  It would be lovely to see it reformed via one as well.   With some estimates as low as 25%  value for what we’re funding it’s not a solution that requires vast amounts of funding.   It requires holding those in charge accountable and putting people in place if necessary who can tackle the job of making sense of the billions of dollars spent.

Canada is comparing worse to other Western country’s  medicare systems, but the financial crunch is impacting everyone as seen in the story from the UK below.


Some of the most common operations — including hip replacements and cataract surgery — will be rationed as part of attempts to save billions of pounds, despite government promises that front-line services would be protected.

The Sunday Telegraph found the details of hundreds of cuts buried in obscure appendices to lengthy policy and strategy documents published by trusts. In most cases, local communities appear to be unaware of the plans.

And that’s how governments work.   You don’t find out about many changes until it’s too late.

Here’s an example of how we’re overpaying for services.   I have Sleep Apnea and have to use a CPAP machine.  If I go to any of the four local providers of CPAP equipment here in Cornwall I essentially am offered the same equipment at the same price as the province sets caps or essentially the market.

Last I checked it was just over $1000.00 for an initial set up.  The province pays 75% and you or your insurance company have to pick up the balance.   The only thing is that these rates are inflated as much as Generic drugs were until recently.

How many millions if not billions are billed to the system and user for all of the many different products and services?

We don’t need private healthcare in Canada.  We need ACCOUNTABLE healthcare.   We need our governments to hold their staff accountable for getting us the best service they can at the most affordable cost instead of passing the buck to the taxpayer.

BUT, and this is a big BUT, it can only happen if we, the voters,  hold politicians and governments to task.   Ask your MP, or  MPP how they feel and how they’d vote.      Politicians generally aren’t stupid people.  If they know an issue is important enough to enough people they get things done.

Canada innovated Medicare.  We should be setting the example instead of looking at the success of others or even worse, giving up and letting our country get swallowed up by US styled health care.

Jamie Gilcig – Editor – The Cornwall Free News


  1. I don’t think we can hold only government responsible for health cares frivolous spending. People such as you scream at the government for accountability for spending. There fore we have a huge problem created

    Look at it like this,
    You hire a person to build a home a general contractor (current director on the hospital) if you will. He/she then provides a quote based on experience including contingencies.

    Now you hire different disciplines to help build the house. During the job they find conditions are not to their liking for what ever reason now creating issues between management and workers ( Dr’s/ Nurses, aides and the like). As they work out their differences conditions are now put in place that were not part of the original contingencies, (nurses cannot do what is now defined an aides responsibility a Nurse cannot do clean up because it is deemed as not her responsibility anymore, a Dr’s cannot do a chore because some other entity deemed it someone else’s responsibility) now we have to re establish the boundaries of the project and hire more 6 people to accomplish what use to take three.
    I have stood in the hall waiting for an emergency bed to be cleared; the nurse was not able to do it as it was the cleaning staff’s responsibility. The people taking the tests had to wait for a person to take blood to the lab after she completed her tests as apparently nobody else of the 5 people had the legs to take it to the lab as requested. Being brought into a emergency room with sever pain only to be given pain killers and left to rest. Two hours later a new Dr arrives and explains due to the pain killers administered I would have to wait until the pain returned to determine what was wrong. That was 10 hrs in the hospital.

    Are these practices the problem of government??

    Why did this happen, well unions for one and peoples independent desire to be in some from of job security.

    The government now holds hospitals more accountable for the funding needed because we asked for accountability.
    Now you need more book keepers to file and check the paper work filled out by the actual health care providors. Now from one accountant we now have 4 and an IT department to help with SAP. We Also need more lawyers as it is easy to sue and we are all now Doctors knowing better then the people trained to do the job
    However such as in Cornwall’s we hire the temp to fill in permanently because nobody else wants the job and we are happy with that.

    Why does this Jeanette Despatie close beds when in fact patients are the income for a hospital? It appears she is holding our health as hostage for what ever she needs. It’s kind of like the cab driver locking the doors cuz he isn’t being paid enough.

    Jamie you cannot blame government alone in doing so you are accomplishing nothing more then passing the buck. As you have said before in another post : You learned a lot from Bob Kilger” I can see that you speak the truth.

    Remember if you can do the job you have no need to work a room!

  2. You need a new system… Democracy will always lead to mob rule and corruption.

  3. I think everyone has to take responsibility for health care and saying that it isn’t the doctors nor the nurses faults is not entirely correct. The way I see it there has been a pitched battle between doctors and nurses for so long neither side has a clue how to move forward and actually work together for the common good. One model that is being used now in operating rooms is to have a seasoned pilot come in and train the staff how to do a checklist for each procedure just as pilots do to prevent common flying mistakes. Every pilot has memorized checklists, backed up by written ones that they go through before they fly. This is one of the reasons why there are so few flying accidents. Plus every single accident is investigated by a team from Transport Canada which then issues a report that goes out to all pilots and crew.
    This background work needs to permeate hospitals and clinics in order to prevent so many problems caused by poor performance and personality conflicts where the victims end up being those who can least afford neglect: the patient. We need patient centered health care.

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