I would like to respond to the letters from both Mr. Swaren and Mr. Van Dam regarding my recent letter to this newspaper regarding health care. Mr. Swaren seems to have missed the point that while the increased cost of private health care will be covered by your health card, it is somewhat disingenuous to think that extra money won’t have to come from somewhere, either increased taxation, or a cut in funding for other public services and institutions.
The Financial Accountability Office for the Province of Ontario just released a report that the Province is about $12.5 billion behind in its fiscal plan for the last fiscal year, and that health care funding has fallen behind by almost $5 billion in the same period. So it certainly seems like the Ford government is deliberately trying to undermine our public health system.
As for Mr. Van Dam, and his endless statistics and questionable scenarios, the fact that I am disappointing him is yet again proof positive that I am on the right track. They have both failed to address what is happening in British Columbia where their government went down this same path of privatization, for the same reasons that the Ford government has given, and is now scrambling to backtrack because of the eye-watering additional costs associated with privatization.
If the Ford government can afford to pay more for health care, like it has already agreed to a 20% cost increase for cataract surgery, then why can it not adequately fund our public system, and pay our doctors and nurses what they are worth? This is the question that needs to be asked, and the answer lies not in economics, but in idealology.