Government Must Choose Public Good Over Ideology for Home Care Delivery

Friends of Medicare would like to extend our support to Home Care workers who delivered letters to Health Minister Horne and Premier Redford outlining their concerns around the changes being made to Home Care delivery in Alberta.

"The Home Care contracts which have been given out so far have been awarded without any public procurement," said Sandra Azocar, Executive Director Friends of Medicare. "The government is using our public health dollars to conduct backroom deals with companies which do not have to provide the public with any measurable outcomes when it comes to the services they deliver."

Friends of Medicare has been advised that recipients of Home Care services are already being moved to agencies which were awarded contracts.  In some cases these contracts are still under negotiation and have yet to be formalized.  "People's lives, continuity of care, and workers' livelihoods are being impacted, and no one knows how these contracts will look like at the end of the day. Nor do we know which agencies, with the exceptions of CBI Health and Bayshore, have been awarded contracts and how many more of our public health dollars will go towards profits for these private corporations," said Azocar. "When profit is the main driving force behind an integral part of our health care system, the negative impacts are on recipients of home care, their already-stretched families, and the workers who are providing the front line services."

Friends of Medicare is calling on the Alberta Government to re-examine the recent changes to Home Care Contracts.  We need to strengthen our community and home care program, so that those who need assistance to safely remain at home can do so.  Cutting services in the name of 'saving' is the wrong way to deal with Home Care.  AHS and the Minister of Health to stop the marketization and eliminate the profit motive from the delivery of Home Care.