Waking up this morning to a lot of really bad takes on two-tier healthcare systems and I want to take back my summer. This is not about polarization or hyperbole. All the best inquiry by the best experts indicate it will do more harm than good. Won't lead to savings either.
But what annoys me the most is that some people would have 19 or so votes from a political party rally over Zoom decide the future of healthcare in Alberta. And that some don't care that if the government acts on it, that's a total bait and switch.
For those calling for a conversation, please show me examples of when this government ever wanted to talk. Some of us have been writing about this issue for months. We have presented to those willing to listen. Govt's response has been to unleash attacks through issues managers.
Unless the sky falls on my head, I'd probably be fine in a two-tier system. But many won't. Before you offer a take on Twitter, think of your privilege. You cannot shift a system from need-based to ability to pay and expect results that are equitable.
And before you point to comparator countries with two-tier sysytems, read about them. Any success they have is not due to two-tier and cannot be replicated here without other fixes that are not on the table here.
I'm just going to leave here some Twitter accounts of people who have studied this issue their whole careers. Follow them and trust their takes because they stake their professional reputation on it: @Lorian_H @ColleenFlood2 @BryanPaulThomas
Adding one more handle: @a_longhurst

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More from @UbakaOgbogu

20 Aug
I really hate to say it, but this article is last straw for me. I can no longer trust information coming from the CMOH. It is contrary to evidence and common sense. It has been politicized. cbc.ca/news/canada/ed…
She must know Alberta numbers show significant variability across cities and towns. She must know community transmission is trending up in places. She must have seen data on school reopening that contradicts what she says here. She must know our plan does not compare favourably.
And before the issues managing trolls come at me with "NDP surrogate attacking doctors", let me point out this is not an attack. I'm fully qualified to assess different sources of information and decide which ones lack credibility.
Read 5 tweets
10 Aug
HUGE SCOOP by @charlesrusnell
& @jennierussell_. Pre-Bill 30 wheeling and dealing to privatize non-emergency orthopedic care in Edmonton. Details bad. Lock-in contracts, non-unionized staff, monopoly, putative pre-approval by govt., etc. More later.

What is most outrageous about this is that the Ministry of Health is involved. This basically soils any RFP process. Massively inappropriate for government to fetter its own discretion. Ridiculous and corrupt.
"lobbyists told the surgeons about several discussions with senior government officials, including Shandro, who were described as being strongly supportive of the initial proposal because it meshes with the government's agenda to increase privately delivered health care" WOW
Read 7 tweets
30 Jul
@SteveBuick2, @shandro's Press Secretary, has a habit of hurling unprovoked nasty insults at Albertans, especially academics and doctors, who challenge the government's policies. /1
A public servant whose salary is paid by tax dollars should not be doing this. He does not seem to comprehend who his true employer is. Our tax dollars should not support bullies. /3
Read 13 tweets
25 Jul
The UCP government has accepted that your children, teachers, grandparents will get sick and/or die come September. They have made their peace with it. The Premier I'd endorsing op-eds that call it developing "natural immunity". Let's get into that. Short THREAD.
For my doctorate, I studied the history of vaccination in Canada and early state policies aimed at promoting it. Here's one thing I learned: natural immunity kills or maims.
Before vaccines were invented (for smallpox), natural immunity occurred in two ways: you get infected naturally by smallpox and you hope for the best, or you are purposefully "inoculated" (i.e. infected) with the disease. In both cases, sick, maimed or dead.
Read 8 tweets
20 Jul
Earlier today, I resigned from the Board of the Health Quality Council of Alberta. The HQCA works independently and objectively to improve patient safety and health service quality for Albertans. Bill 30 takes that away. Read my resignation letter: bit.ly/2ODGRUt
Arms length institutions play a critical role in advanced healthcare systems. They provide independent, objective, non-partisan inputs that survive and resist election cycles, changes in government, and regulatory capture. The AB govt. is steadily eroding these institutions.
When it's all done, the Minister of Health will have immense and unchecked power to direct the agenda of institutions that perform expertise-driven and objective functions within our healthcare system.
Read 4 tweets
18 Jul
THREAD: Spent much of spring/summer working with @Lorian_H to address health system/policy issues arising from Alberta government actions. Collating that work here to give Albertans one stop access to a different perspective on what the issues managers are feeding us.
On Babylon and virtual care: edmontonjournal.com/opinion/column…

Peer-reviewed article on this forthcoming.
Read 9 tweets

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