NUPGE continues campaign to save public medicare system

'We can't stand still. We can either go back or we can go forward. The choice we make today will decide the future of medicare in Canada.' - Tommy Douglas

Ottawa (3 Apr. 2008) - The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) has issued two new public education tools as part of its ongoing campaign to defend and expand Canada's public medicare system.

Two new pamphlets - Create a National Pharmacare Program and Better Nursing Home Care for the Elderly - continue the union's Top Priority: Short wait times theme.

The pamphlets make the case for two elements of a 10-step plan for the renewal of Canada's public health system. The campaign is based on the premise that while the social and economic foundations of medicare are strong, the system is not perfect.

For many Canadians the biggest concern is about wait times. NUPGE sees a return to short wait times as essential to improving the health outcomes for many Canadians. This will also help to restore public confidence in the system. Through it all one thing is absolutely clear: the real solutions to long wait times are to be found within the PUBLIC system.

NUPGE does not believe Canada should turn to the private sector for the solutions. In fact, doing so would undermine and eventually destroy the public medicare system.

The 10 proposals for health care renewal represent a significant modernization of the system. If implemented, NUPGE is convinced that Canadians would see wait times significantly reduced and the health care system put on a more sustainable path.

It is hoped that people will use NUPGE's series of pamphlets to inform family members, neighbours and friends of the next steps in the evolution of Canada's successful but unfinished medicare system.

Finally, the National Union wants to remind Canadians of the words of Tommy Douglas, the founder of medicare:

"Let's not forget that the ultimate goal of medicare must be to keep people well rather than just patching them up when they get sick. That means clinics. That means making hospitals available for active treatment cases only, getting chronic patients out into nursing homes, carrying on home nursing programs that are much more effective. It means expanding and improving medicare by providing pharmacare and dental care programs.

"We can't stand still. We can either go back or we can go forward. The choice we make today will decide the future of medicare in Canada." NUPGE

More information:
● Canada's Medicare System: Building on the Legacy!
● Short Wait Times
● More Health Professionals
● Create a National Home Care Program
● Create a National Pharmacare Program
● Better Nursing Home Care for the Ederly

Web posted by NUPGE: 3 April 2008