Order of priorities - Patients first
by Francois Pan on May 3, 2015 - 7:42am
The original news article Ontario’s doctors say budget puts the health-care system at risk was written by an anonymous writer and published on the website of Canada Newswire on the 6th of February 2015.
The president of the Ontario Medical Association Dr. Ved Tandan denounces that the current government’s budget is threatening the proper functioning of the health-care system. The years –long underfunding of the health facilities has not only compromised the well-being of the patients but also increased the already burdensome pressure on the doctors. Statistically speaking, more than 900,000 people in Ontario do not have family doctors and this number is adding up with the population continues to grow and age. However, this alarming situation has not been proper dealt with since the new provincial budget didn’t increase any investment in health-care but trimmed off 1.5 billion from medical services. In response to Wynne’s government’s cut in expense, The Ontario Medical Association insisted that patients remain the top priority and offered to the government a two year suspension of the physician fees in exchange of a more reasonable health-care budget for the growing and aging population. The discussion between the government and the OMA remains an unsettled issue in April 2015.
Ontario’s Medical Association is certainly an example of old power attempts to use new power. Although OMA does represent a great number of voices with 39000 registered members, the nature of the association is quite exclusive and accepts only practicing physicians, residents and medical students. However, in this recent negotiation with Wynne’s government, OMA calls for the help of new power when it uses various media platforms to urge the public to exert pressure on the government‘s cut in budget. This is an interesting shift of power model since usually the debate between the Ontario government and the OMA takes place uniquely between the two parties. The involvement of the general public in this debate can be interpreted as the growing role of new power in the society.