Monday, April 02, 2012

More policy on the fly from Redford: Family Care Clinics

Updated: see bottom of post!

Today Premier Redford announced if she is elected that 140 family care clinics will be created in Alberta over the next 3 yrs.  Sounds wonderful but it looks like a desperation move and policy on the fly on her part for a number of reasons.

It was only a couple of weeks ago, March 22nd, that she announced 3 family care clinics that were to be built as a "pilot" project.  What happened in 2 weeks to turn a small pilot project of 3 into 140?

The cost for the 3 was to be 15 million dollars, making the cost of 140 ( if you believe the gov't numbers which are almost ALWAYS wrong) to be 700 million dollars. 700 million dollars that were NOT in the budget and which will make Redford's promises on a surplus next year all but impossible to keep. ( Don't forget that pre-election spending spree of at least $182 million un-budgeted dollars as well)

Also, how does 700 billion in new spending fit into Bill 1, the 'results based' budgeting bill where all money spend was to be evaluated based on results? This was entirely possible with the 3 'pilot' clinics, but to jump to 140 without knowing if the results does not exactly fit with what Redford passed as law in Alberta.


And lastly and perhaps the most important of all: Where will all the doctors, nurses and other staff come from to staff these 140 clinics?  We already have a known doctor shortage in this province and now with the gov't deciding to open 140 clinics, where will these doctors come from? Will they decide to close their private offices to work in a government run clinic, creating other problems? The same can be said about nurses, who currently find themselves often working short due to staff shortages in our existing hospitals and it is already creating undue stresses on the staff and the system. Where are we planning to get enough nurses to not only fix the existing shortages but also staff 140 new clinics?


It's more policy on the fly from a premier scrambling to stem the bad poll numbers with only 2 weeks to go before the election and the possible end of a 41 year political dynasty.

Update: Redford claims that the new clinics can be funded with existing money from AHS and will not cost any additional money.  How is that even possible? You would have to reduce money going somewhere else and the PCs never cut anything so where would it come from, and that does not even get into the issue of staffing the new clinics unless of course they plan to move existing staff out of hospitals and into the clinics!!!
To put it nicely the claim that this will not cost any additional cash is BS.

Alberta Medical Association president Dr. Linda Slocombe: Tory party campaign promise also goes against the Health Quality Council of Alberta recommendation earlier this year that the government undertake no further major re-structuring of the health-care system without a clear rationale, a transition plan and consultation



Wildrose press release on the issue.

9 comments:

Frances said...

And where are they going to site these clinics? One Calgary clinic was placed in the same complex as an existing 'private' clinic providing much the same services. Needless to say, the 'private' clinic has closed its doors. So no net gain of medical care in that community.

RJ65 said...

I'm interested in what the mandate of these clinics would be and if they will be in direct competition with the existing medical clinics around the province. What is the problem that this policy is supposed to address? How will the program be evaluated?

I thought the problem was a lack of family doctors. Having more office space will not multiply the number of doctors.

Why not spend some of that money, if it was available for spending, on additional training spaces to create more doctors and then let those doctors start their own clinics.

Blame Crash said...

Fictional doctors are as easy to conjure up as fictional clinics.
It’s all just part of the Big-Lie methods that she was instructed to use by her Ontario bureaucrats and Liberal Party sponsors and cohorts.
She’s just following orders.

Blame Crash said...

Creating 140 family clinics without costing a dime is totally preposterous and is only doable by “nationalizing” 140 privately owned clinic. And doing that without costing anything is total bunk.
This scheme is actually a coded threat directed at the livelihood of any doctor who dares to speak the truth. The unspoken threat is that you’ll have your property shanghaied and then you’ll be railroaded out of province if you don’t play along with the PC Stasi instructions.
This is just the same old MO with this bunch.

Robert G. Harvie said...

The Minister was on Rutherford today stammering and stuttering trying to put on his best face.

When questioned about the "trial" projects in Slave Lake, Calgary and Edmonton, and asked, "Are these 140 clinics going to be built regardless of the outcome of the trials?"

The response.

Uhm.

Well.

Yes.

The leader has committed to build these clincs.

(Regardless of the outcome of the trials).

Does this sound at all like the manic days of Don Getty building hospitals wherever he needed a vote or two?

Only to close them down years later after wasting billions of tax dollars to "buy" another election.

Same.

Old.

Same.

Old.

Anonymous said...

If Wildrose go 15+ points over the Progressives we might see actual real "private clinics" promised. 20+ and Redford will start condemning her mentors at the UN. LOL and they don't pay attention to polls right?

Anonymous said...

If Wildrose go 15+ points over the Progressives we might see actual real "private clinics" promised. 20+ and Redford will start condemning her mentors at the UN. LOL and they don't pay attention to polls right?

Anonymous said...

If Wildrose go 15+ points over the Progressives we might see actual real "private clinics" promised. 20+ and Redford will start condemning her mentors at the UN. LOL and they don't pay attention to polls right?

Anonymous said...

I plead with Redford to not tamper the community health centre in Calgary's Ranchlands neighbourhood and the Calgary Lab Services office at Market Mall. They are working fine.