B-01 HEALTH-CARE IN CANADA
- The five historic principles of the Canada Health Act (1984) (universality, access, comprehensiveness, portability, and public administration) shall define any vision, current or renewed, for publicly funded health care in Canada. These principles shall inform all ACER-CART interventions on health care in Canada.
- The Federal Government is an essential partner with the provinces in the provision of health care. Among other things, it has the responsibility to define national standards for health care and to provide funding, supplementary to provincial funding, adequate to ensure the implementation of such national standards. ACER-CART shall, insofar as it is able, support efforts of the Federal Government in renewing existing national standards and in monitoring their implementation.
- To meet the growing demands for home care, particularly for seniors, ACER-CART supports a National Seniors Strategy which would include the establishment of a long-term national plan for home care as an integral part of health care services for those who would benefit from such care.
- Timely access to health care and required services, provided by qualified medical personnel, in the official language of the patient’s choice (2005), shall be the right of all Canadians, irrespective of their place of residence, financial circumstances, or state of health.
- Health care shall be deemed to include education, prevention, diagnosis and counselling, and shall be the element upon which all health care pivots in a Canadian comprehensive health-care system.
- Seniors constitute an increasing proportion of Canadian society. Seniors have special needs and ACER-CART, on their behalf, urges health-care policymakers to take an integrated approach to health care, one that will ensure seniors a measure of independence commensurate with their history; and will ensure a quality of life and death with dignity through care at home, in long-term care facilities, and in hospital settings.
- All citizens of Canada have a right to health care. System efficiencies, streamlining operations, and restructuring health-care facilities shall not be accepted as sufficient reason to deny citizens this right, regardless of location or wealth. It is conceded, however, that such services need to be provided as efficiently as possible.
- ACER-CART supports the establishment of a funding formula which would clarify the proportion of financing for health care which could be expected on a long-term basis from taxation revenues collected by the various levels of government: federal, provincial/territorial, and municipal.
- Possible expansion of publicly funded health services shall not compromise the availability and quality of those medical services currently insured, except for those services no longer deemed basic or required.
- Organizations of retired teachers will continue to be involved with the development of health-care strategies intended to benefit Canadians of all generations, in a meaningful and continuing way.
- To ensure that national standards for Medicare are adhered to, free from undue political influence, ACER-CART supports the establishment of a National Medicare Oversight Council independent of government. Its mandate would be to monitor the implementation of national standards and, where advisable, to propose new ones.
- ACER-CART believes that home care should constitute an essential element of the national health-care system.
- ACER-CART supports the inclusion of hearing aids, eyeglasses, and diabetic supplies in publicly insured programs.
- To meet the special health care needs of seniors, Governments, federal and provincial, should work towards the creation of geriatric centres whose mandate would include the provision of health care to the elderly outside of hospital settings.