BC Health Coalition

September 27, 2010 08:01 ET

UBCM resolution takes on for-profit health care

UBCM 2010: City councils call for government action to stop for-profit health care

Attention: City Editor, Health/Medical Editor, Media Editor, News Editor, Government/Political Affairs Editor VANCOUVER/BC/MEDIA RELEASE--(Marketwire - Sept. 27, 2010) - A resolution* calling for immediate government action to prevent the growth of for-profit medical clinics is on the agenda at this week's Union of BC Municipalities Convention in Whistler.

"We put this resolution on the agenda because we don't want to see B.C. walk down the slippery slope towards U.S.-style health care and to ensure that we have an equitable and efficient health care system that is both publicly funded and publicly administered," said Victoria City Councillor Philippe Lucas.

The resolution is sponsored by the cities of Victoria and New Westminster. It calls on the UBCM to request that the province take immediate measures to protect public health care by establishing a moratorium on the expansion and funding of private, for-profit surgical and diagnostic clinics, and instead promote publicly funded and administered outpatient facilities.

In the past week hundreds of citizens have sent e-mail messages to municipalities around the province asking their local mayors and councils to support the resolution through an on-line campaign coordinated by the BC Health Coalition.

"Health Minister Falcon must take a leadership role in protecting British Columbians from private investors who are charging illegal user fees and billing patients for health services already covered by Medicare," said Health Coalition Co-chair Rachel Tutte.

The resolution also follows a recent BC Court of Appeal ruling confirming that the Medical Services Commission has the authority to audit for-profit clinics in BC, including Dr. Brian Day's Cambie Surgery Centre. Cambie is the largest for-profit clinic in BC and is leading a legal attack on B.C.'s Medicare laws that protect patients from being charged user fees for publicly insured, medically necessary health care.

*Resolution B155 can be downloaded from: http://tinyurl.com/22ofq3m /For further information: www.bchealthcoalition.ca/ IN: ECONOMY, FINANCE, HEALTH, MEDIA, POLITICS

Contact Information

  • Lew MacDonald, Co-ordinator, BC Health Coalition
    Primary Phone: 604-787-6541
    Secondary Phone: 604-681-7945
    E-mail: info@bchealthcoalition.ca