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NDP says Ford government plans to privatize health care in Ontario

DH Toronto Staff Jan 31, 2019 11:59 am 4,013

The NDP says they have a report and privatization bill that reveals that Doug Ford is planning for severe cuts and the privatization of Ontario’s health care system.

According to NDP Leader Andrea Horwath, she will fight to stop it.

In a release, the NDP say they obtained internal government documents including a draft of legislation that lays out Ford’s plan to create a new “super agency health bureaucracy,” with a specific mandate to privatize health services such as hospitals.

The NDP says that the Ford government released a report on Thursday, “which appears to set the stage for that health care privatization and the deep cuts.”

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“Every Ontarian who’s ever rushed a sick child to the emergency room, or seen an elderly parent through a medical crisis, knows that our world-class health care system is hanging by a thread after decades of cuts and underfunding by Liberal and Conservative governments — including 15 years of the Wynne Liberals’ cuts,” said Horwath in the release.

“But the people of Ontario don’t believe the solution to cuts is more cuts, and they certainly don’t believe the answer is privatizing our health care system… I’m not letting it happen without a fight.”

Thursday’s report was released by The Premier’s Council on Improving Healthcare and Ending Hallway Medicine and its first report provides what they call “an overview of the problem of hallway health care in Ontario.”

“There’s much to be proud of in our health care system. However, there are also many barriers that make the system difficult to navigate for patients and providers,” said special advisor and council chair Dr. Rueben Devlin, in a provincial release. “This report is a first step in advising the government on how to transform Ontario’s health care system.”

The council will now begin developing advice for the government and look at recommendations that will explore opportunities for improvement in “digital health care, integrated health care delivery and finding efficiencies in the system to improve health outcomes for Ontarians.”

But the NDP says Ford’s plan for super-bureaucracies would make the current system worse.

“Ontarians deserve a government that invests in front-line health care to shorten wait times and end hallway medicine,” said Horwath. “In short, when it comes to health care in Ontario, people deserve more from their government, not less.”

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