Monday's announcement by federal health minister Leona Aglukkaq that she will not interfere with the approval of generic OxyContin is just the latest development in what has become a major public health crisis. When the legal and regulatory framework results in a situation in which more than a dozen Canadians die each week because of an accidental prescription drug overdose, that framework needs to be changed.
Physician, Researcher, St. Michael's Hospital
Dr. Dhalla is a general internist at <a href="http://www.stmichaelshospital.com/" rel="nofollow">St. Michael's Hospital</a>, a Scientist in the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute of St. Michael's Hospital and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine and the <a href="http://www.ihpme.utoronto.ca/" rel="nofollow">Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation</a> at the University of Toronto. He is a regular writer for the online health policy magazine <a href="http://Healthydebate.ca" rel="nofollow">Healthydebate.ca</a> <br> <br> After completing his clinical training at the University of Toronto, he received a Commonwealth Scholarship, which he used to complete a master's degree in Health Policy, Planning and Financing from the London School of Economics and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Dr. Dhalla serves on the Committee to Evaluate Drugs, an advisory committee to the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, and on the board of <a href="http://www.canadiandoctorsformedicare.ca/" rel="nofollow">Canadian Doctors for Medicare</a>.
Last week, the family that owns Shouldice Hospital announced that it would like to sell its facility to Centric Health, a for-profit company. When it comes to providing complicated medical and surgical care that must be customized for each individual patient, non-profits are generally better. Selling medicare off, piece by piece, to large for-profit companies is the wrong approach.
09/20/2012 05:12 EDT
How did you end up paying for my teeth cleaning? My private health insurance plan reimburses me for dentistry and optometry, as well as prescription drugs and other health care services. But health insurance premiums aren't taxed the way the rest of income is. People without private health insurance are disadvantaged the most by the private health insurance subsidy. They have no private health insurance themselves, yet they still end up subsidizing everyone else's coverage.
08/24/2012 12:17 EDT
Some evidence suggests that about one-third of the tests doctors order are unnecessary -- and doctors make a pretty penny on those tests. Recently the Ontario government announced that it is reducing OHIP fees by 50 per cent in situations where self-referral has occurred. The government has good reason to be interested in this issue, but cutting fees for self-referral isn't the answer.
05/30/2012 05:15 EDT
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