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Ontario has been the site of dueling pharmacare proposals and Canadians are the victors. At the end of April, the opposition NDP promised universal drug coverage for a list of essential medicines. Not to be outdone, the ruling Liberal party announced universal coverage for all drugs on the provincial formulary for youth under 25 years of age. Most health policy experts praised both proposals, myself included.
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Canada is an outlier for not having a universal program for prescription drugs for children and for allowing wide inter-provincial variation in how public drug plans serve children. This means that many families can't afford to pay for the essential medicines that their children need to get healthy, stay healthy and grow up healthy.
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A recent conference in Toronto addressed whether Australia has anything to teach Canada about how Canadian medicare might evolve. There are a number of areas where Australia's experience might prove helpful. The first is the public funding of pharmaceuticals.
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Other than driving doctors to activism that might even send them north across the border, threats to the Canadian system as a result of the Trump agenda relate less to the repeal of Obamacare and more to his intention to renegotiate NAFTA.
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The Ontario Liberals have just announced a pharmacare plan targeted at youths aged 25 and under which will provide full coverage for a wide range of prescription drugs. This is welcome news, to be sure. But we must ensure that policies enacted today carry forward to the longer-term goal of equitable and cost-effective health care.
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Several national commissions on Canada's health care system have recommended adding prescription drugs to our publicly funded universal medicare system. No federal government has ever acted on those recommendations. Not yet, anyhow. By creating 'pharmacare-junior,' Premier Wynne and Minister Hoskins are in essence calling on the federal government to help finish the job and create a pharmacare program for all Canadians of all ages.
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By Joe Farago, Executive Director Healthcare Innovation at Innovative Medicines Canada It's tough to talk about mental illness in the workplace. People worry about what their colleagues might think or...
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Unnecessary care could be a prescription drug, a diagnostic test or a medical procedure that does not improve a patient's health outcomes and is not backed by the best available evidence. It may also involve risks and harmful side-effects. In other words, this is medical care that offers no value to patients and strains health care resources.
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It's a scenario straight out of a horror movie. You start with a normal bout of strep throat and figure you're going to have to deal with that week-long stretch of pain and difficulty swallowing. But after a few days, things get much worse. You are diagnosed with necrotizing fasciitis, better known as flesh-eating disease.
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We are facing an antibiotic resistance crisis. Almost every health authority has sounded the alarm and the most recognized authority, the World Health Organization, is doing all it can to slow the arrival of the post-antibiotic era. Yet, even as these calls are made, the use of these drugs continues to be unacceptably high.
At its core, antibiotic resistance is merely a coping mechanism. Bacteria are faced with a rather dire form of stress and need to find a way to cope. They can take the biological route of genetic mutation to render the drug useless. They also can gain a plasmid from the environment or another bacterium, to gain resistance mechanisms.
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It's a good news story in many ways. Abolishing these user fees puts an end to an unfair and inefficient system where money or private health insurance allowed one to jump the queue and get in front of the line, regardless of whether they had more urgent medical needs.
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Despite the success of vaccines, mumps wasn't eradicated. Small pockets of infection continued to appear. These small outbreaks were difficult to control but eventually burned out such that they disappeared. For the most part, these isolated events were considered part of the ongoing reality of an ever-present virus.
In teachers' college, I had an excellent professor who talked about removing oneself from a situation before it became critically difficult to deal with. I'll call it the 60 per cent rule, although he may have given a different number. Don't wait until you are at 99 per cent of what you can handle, when you are dealing with other people.