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Thursday, January 26, 2017
We all believe politicians are liars: Here is proof
For-profit cancer clinic costs more, doesn’t cut wait times
Polls show that Canadians overwhelmingly support public — not private, for-profit — health care. (In a 2011 Nanos Research study, for instance, 94% said yes to public health care.) So it’s not surprising that when Sunnybrook Hospital in Toronto opened the province’s first ever private cancer treatment clinic, many Ontarians had questions. The centre opened in 2001, receiving over $4 million as a start-up grant, even though the company was operating for its own profits.
For-profit clinic lacks transparency
The provincial government wouldn’t answer many of the questions that Ontarians raised about its contract with the clinic operators. Although the for-profit facility was financed with public money, the contract was considered to be a “commercial secret” that prevented the public from accessing key details about the deal. To date, the full contract has never been made public.
It was only after months of pressure from opposition parties that the terms of the deal were ultimately subject to scrutiny in the provincial legislature. When NDP Health Critic Frances Lankin was finally able to view the contract, she was barred from making a photocopy and had to take notes by hand. Public concern about the contract continued to build, eventually forcing a special audit by the provincial auditor general.