Against privatization of Health Care

Letters

(This letter was copied to Health Minister Adrian Dix and MLA Nicholas Simons.)

Editor:

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Those advocating for a for-profit seniors care facility on the Sunshine Coast conveniently overlook the serious implications that privatization would have for residents and their families.

Many studies show that, in general, public facilities offer better care than for-profit ones, based on a number of health outcomes.

According to a recent report from the B.C. Office of the Seniors Advocate, “There are some differences between facilities based on ownership type. Health authority owned and operated facilities, on average, have higher funded direct care hours, higher rates of therapy, fewer single-occupancy rooms, more complex and physically-dependent residents, and fewer reportable incidents and substantiated complaints compared to contracted facilities.”

If the proposed Trellis facility is approved it will be impossible, under federal tax law, for the Sunshine Coast Healthcare Auxiliary to continue providing the many goods and services it currently offers to residents of Totem Lodge and Shorncliffe. Over the past five years the Auxiliary has raised almost $3,000,000 and donated a wide variety of medical and other equipment. Its volunteers provide activities ranging from music therapy to birthday parties.

Privatization would greatly diminish the quality of life the residents enjoy and expose families to thousands of dollars of potential costs. I urge the Honourable Adrian Dix, Minister of Health, to renounce his support for private care and begin a meaningful process of community engagement immediately.

Michelle Chapman, Roberts Creek

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