STOP shutting down private medical center

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Owners of private BC medical clinics warn of longer wait times and reduced access to essential medical procedures as a result of the NDP government’s planned crackdown on private clinics that offer people their right to seek an alternative to the current overburdened medical system.  In spite of the common misconception that Canada’s public health care system is world class, tens of thousands of people in the province suffer in pain, waiting their place in line to receive many common, but essential, medical procedures. Private clinics provide a valuable service to sick and injured patients who can’t afford the time to wait in an excessive and unreasonably long queue, hoping that they will reach the front of the line before time runs out.  Many life saving procedures carried out on a daily basis at various private medical facilities such as False Creak Medical Clinic are threatened by the NDP government’s plans to strip away alternatives to people whose quality of life is affected by having to wait for several months before they can be scheduled in for their essential medical procedures – procedures that should be considered basic rights for all residents of BC who contribute their hard earned money through personal taxes that go to the public health care system.  

The government has threatened doctors working at private clinics with excessively punitive damages, legal action and potential disbarment from the public health care system if they continued to bill clients outside of the public health care system.  Private clinics took to the courts to have their case heard for protecting citizens’ Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the right for patients to seek and pay for their own care in private clinics if their only other alternative is to wait for the public health care system to get to them.  While the case was still in front of the courts, the government took the curious and heavy-handed step of bringing in legislation enacting their draconian measures. What kind of democracy does the NDP government, the self-proclaimed government of the people, call this? On a daily basis, Canadians are witness to the ongoing circus south of the border where politics is taking precedence over common sense.  Rather than taking a measured and reasoned approach to social issues, misguided leaders are using governmental legislation that circumvent due process to implement policies strictly to push their own personal, political agendas.

The Province insists that wait times are acceptable and that new operating rooms are being opened to address the current shortfall, however, thousands of BC residents remain on wait lists for a variety of procedures, some which the individual consider essential for maintaining a reasonable quality of life. At the very least, why not allow legal due process continue to resolve this issue?  In the meantime, if the government is serious in their efforts to reduce wait times and improve access to the health care system, they can continue to make improvements to the system by building more operating rooms, opening more hospital beds, and hiring more doctors and nurses. If the government succeeds in making the necessary improvements, then and only then should they consider addressing the issue of fair, equitable and timely access to all medical procedures for all BC residents.

This petition urges the NDP government to stop their plans to enact legislation that penalizes doctors for providing citizens with their freedom of choice.  Let the courts, not the political party of the day, decide what is in the public’s best interest in the long term. Please sign this petition in support of free choice and share this petition to bring change and to allow citizens to make their own personal choice on how they want to receive medical treatment.  After all, who best knows what the most appropriate path is for receiving treatment – the individual in discussion with their physician of choice, or the government?