THUNDER BAY – Thunder Bay – Superior North MPP Lise Vaugeois joins her NDP colleagues in the Ontario legislature in decrying Doug Ford's move to privatize 50 per cent of the province's health care system by moving patients to private, for-profit clinics. This move will result in a decline in the quality of care as for-profit enterprises poach health care workers from the public system and implement patient fees for "extra services" not covered by OHIP. This will result in patients using credit cards, not health cards.
"Since the day the Conservatives first came to power, they have focused on defunding and privatizing Ontario's health care system," MPP Lise Vaugeois said. "This has always been the Conservative tactic: create a crisis in a public system by starving it of funding and resources, creating a 'solution' by shifting services to the private sector. This is precisely what Mike Harris did to the Long Term Care system in the 1990s, resulting in substandard care and preventable deaths during the pandemic. This is only the beginning of Ford's privatization scheme. Our public healthcare system is collapsing from understaffing, yet the government wants to expand private healthcare by pulling workers from our public system."
It should be noted that one of the top private eye care facilities in the province heavily lobbied the Ford government to expand private cataract surgeries and has close ties to Doug Ford's Ontario PCs.
"We've seen it with the Greenbelt fiasco, and now we are seeing it again with health care. Buckle in, folks, when it comes to attacking our public health care system, this government is going to get it done" said Vaugeois.
MPP Vaugeois and the Ontario NDP stress the need to invest in our public health care system by supporting it with the resources it needs instead of spending them on for-profit clinics. Instead of selling our health care to political donors, the premier must stop this attack on health care, rescind Bill 124, and work with groups such as ONA and the College of Physicians and Surgeons to address the crisis in our health care system.
The Ontario Legislature stands adjourned until February 21.