Canadian Federal Elections 2015: What are potential parties promising for healthcare?

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If you live in the Canadian true north strong and free, all you’ve been hearing about lately in the news has been about the upcoming federal elections. In just four weeks, most of us will be heading over to polls to cast our ballots for the new incoming party. Since the federal elections have been a buzzing topic, and here at Hemtecks we discuss healthcare and science very frequently…I thought…why not actually see what the parties are actually promising?

I decided to go straight to the source, which was each party’s platform webpage. Here is what I found:

  1. Bloc Quebecois Nothing. Well…I’d be lying if I said there wasn’t anything on their webpage…but what I mean by nothing is that as being someone whos first language isn’t French, the Bloc Quebecois’ content was simply meaningless for me. There wasn’t even a prompt from Google Chrome to translate the page!

2. Conservatives – Harper is running for yet another term. After scouring the platform site, I couldn’t find any party promises on the topic of healthcare. This is not too surprising as this year’s election has placed a heavier emphasis on improving the Canadian economy. I did find one thing – a button to translate the page into French!

3. Liberals – Looking at Trudeau’s plan, there are several environmental and scientific initiatives outlined. Some of these include: restoring credibility to environmental assessments, taking greater action on climate change, investing in clean technologies, creating clean jobs, and investing in the preservation of natural ecosystems. One other interesting promise was to “unmuzzle scientists”. This initiative would aim to allow government scientists to freely talk about their work, increase public accessibility to government science work as well as the creation of a Chief Science Officer position to increase scientific engagement in important governmental decisions. I was quite impressed at the breadth and depth of the platform promises listed on the site and how easy they were to navigate!

4. NDP – Mulclair’s site was the only one to have a specific healthcare section. He has 5 main points listed:

  • Hiring 7000 family doctors, nurses and other professionals and opening 200 new community health clinics (to provide healthcare services for the 5 million Canadians who currently do not have a family doctor)
  • A universal drug plan to make prescriptions more affordable
  • Expanding homecare to support 41,000 seniors in order to reduce burdens on hospitals and emergency rooms
  • Introducing an innovation fund to improve mental health care for young Canadians –
  • Launching a national Alzheimer’s and dementia strategy to support research, screening and diagnosis.
Quite a diverse and detailed list!
5. Green Party – On the main site, there was no healthcare section, but after doing a quick search I found a lengthy list of planned initiatives. After having a read-through, I found that a many of the listed promises were the same as the NDP’s – including a universal pharmacare program, more mental health initiatives, increasing community care vs hospital-based care programs, and implementing a National Dementia Strategy. Other notable promises include: the creation of accessible electronic health records for all Canadians, improving home and long-term care, reducing barriers to portability of health coverages (including mobile medical professional teams), and the creation of a Universal Healthy School Food Program.
The focus this year’s election has mainly been on other areas such as the economy, national security and foreign policies. Healthcare hasn’t been in the spotlight this year but most of these parties have quite visibly laid out what they would like to accomplish in this area. Climate change, sustainable practices and scientific policies have also been discussed about. Now it is up to you, my fellow Canadians, to do your research and come to a personal decision of who you will be voting for come October 19th! Remember, voting is a privilege, not a right – so make the most of it and make your vote count!
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3 thoughts on “Canadian Federal Elections 2015: What are potential parties promising for healthcare?

  1. smahemtecks says:

    Interesting read. It is unfortunate that their are numerous cuts each year for research, overworked RNs and unequal distribution of funds in healthcare. I hope whoever party is elected will keep up with their promises – well….. at least not cut any future funds. Thanks for your contribution!

    Like

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