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Showing posts from January, 2018

Manitoba Liberals call for immediate action on Meth crisis

Manitoba Liberals are calling for immediate action by the Pallister Government, and the Health Minister in particular, to deal with what is a genuine crisis in methamphetamine addiction that is killing Manitobans, putting people on the frontline at risk, and tearing apart families who are pushed to the breaking point trying to find help for their loved ones.  In the past month, we have heard from people across Manitoba that there is a meth crisis in their community, and that there are not enough provincial resources to deal with it. We heard it from the mother of an addict in Brandon, who told us it is a problem in rural and northern Manitoba, and that it’s impossible to access care. We heard it at the Main Street Project. We hear it from homelessness advocates and health professionals, who say they are seeing people from all walks of life who have lost everything because of their crystal meth addiction. The Pallister government is doing virtually nothing to deal with a problem that is v…

The wait times for back surgery in Manitoba are far too long

There is a serious problem with wait times for back surgery in Manitoba and it has become much worse over the past year.  Today I tell you the story of one person. This individual has asked to remain anonymous, but I share this today so that there can be more awareness of this problem, and so that this situation can be addressed.
This individual has needed back surgery (fusion for L1 to L5 vertebrae) for more than three years.   He was seen by his own family physician who then referred him to the Pan Am Pain Clinic.  He was finally seen by his surgeon at the Health Sciences Centre, two years later in October of 2016.  The surgeon who saw him at the Health Sciences Centre agreed that he needed surgery.  At that time, he committed verbally that he expected the surgery would occur in 9-12 months.  It is now more than 14 months later and he is still waiting, and there is still no surgery date in sight.
The doctor seems to be able to get operating room time only for trauma patients who p…

Private clinics and their charges for essential medical services in Manitoba

Statement by Dougald Lamont, Manitoba Liberal Leader - today
Health Minister Kelvin Goertzen’s claim that he only recently learned that a private clinic in Manitoba is charging $650 so patients can cut to the front of the line for echocardiograms is simply not credible. Goertzen claimed to have heard in the media about the clinic being at risk of violating the Canada Health Act, but he has continued to defend the clinic, as did his department of health. It is hard to believe that he was unaware, especially given the implied approval he has given to other private services like MRIs. We want to make our position clear: Private clinics in Manitoba should not be charging fees so patients can jump the queue for diagnostic tests. These tests should be available to all Manitobans at public expense, based on medical need - and could be, but the Pallister Government is starving the health care system of funds. If these private clinics are not willing to provide services based on medical need t…