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Residents & families can rest easy that homes for Albertans with disabilities will not be privatized

January 29, 2021
EDMONTON

Residents & families can rest easy that homes for Albertans with disabilities will not be privatized

After many months of waiting, Rajan Sawhney, Minister of Community and Social Services, announced today that the Alberta government will maintain the current service model for residential and personal care facilities for people with disabilities in Edmonton and Calgary.  Albertans who have called these Direct Operations sites their homes for years or decades will be able to remain there under public operation.

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Health Coalitions call for Federal Leadership to Defend Public Health Care

Media Release
For Immediate Release
January 25, 2021

 

Health Coalitions call for Federal Leadership to Defend Public Health Care

(Edmonton) Seven health coalitions, representing concerned Canadians from PEI to British Columbia, are calling for stronger federal action on health care ahead of Monday’s opening of Parliament.

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Gov't action urgently needed amid deaths of AB health care workers

January 7, 2021
EDMONTON

Government action urgently needed amid deaths of AB health care workers

On behalf of Friends of Medicare’s board and staff, as well as our members and supporters across Alberta, we would like to extend our condolences to the family, friends and health care colleagues of the three health care providers who have now died from COVID-19. The devastating loss of these workers marks a crucial moment at which this government must act expediently to fulfil their responsibility to prevent any further deaths. 

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Albertans have lost trust in the government's travelling circus

Albertans have lost trust in the government's travelling circus

 
Albertans have suffered and sacrificed greatly in the past several months, not least of all by cancelling holiday plans with friends and family as per government mandated public health restrictions. But we have done so with the understanding that these sacrifices were necessary to curb Alberta’s extraordinary COVID-19 numbers, which have surged massively over the past few months under the UCP government’s reluctance to implement the restrictions necessary to limit the spread. Worse still, as of December 29, our provincial COVID-19 death toll has tragically reached 1,046, according to the latest available data.
 
But while Albertans have been tasked by the Premier with personal responsibility in lieu of adequate and timely public health restrictions, and while our health care workers continue to risk the safety of their families and themselves in order to save the lives of Albertans, a number of UCP MLAs and government staffers opted to ignore their own government’s recommendations and vacation abroad. Among those who were travelling was Tracy Allard, MLA for Grande Prairie and Minister of Municipal Affairs, who opted to spend her holiday in Hawaii. Importantly, Allard was the vice-chair of the Emergency Management Cabinet Committee, tasked with overseeing the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccination throughout the province.
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Health Coalitions Call for Increased Federal Health Care Funding and Accountability

Health Coalitions Call for Increased Federal Health Care Funding and Accountability

Ottawa, December 10, 2020- On December 10, Canada’s premiers are meeting with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to request an increase to federal funding for health care. Health coalitions from across the country support the call for a long-term increase to the Canada Health Transfer (CHT). This funding must be accompanied by a robust accountability framework to ensure that provinces and territories invest this money in public health care and uphold the Canada Health Act.
 
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Alberta's seniors deserve accountability from government & continuing care operators

November 27, 2020
EDMONTON

Alberta's seniors deserve accountability from government & continuing care operators

The Alberta government’s most recent announcement of new COVID-19 restrictions did little to promote the protection of seniors who reside in Alberta’s continuing care system. We heard nothing by way of a staffing plan to ensure that seniors receive much-needed care, or to address the shortages that will continue to be exacerbated by limitations set on families’ visitation.

During Wednesday’s daily COVID-19 update, Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, announced that Alberta Health Services would be looking to move existing patients out of acute care and into continuing care facilities in order to make room for COVID-19 patients and the additional ICU beds they are anticipated to require. Alberta Health, AHS, and the province’s continuing care operators will be working together to expand the availability of beds. Dr. Hinshaw says AHS will make more than 2,000 acute care beds and up to 400 ICU beds available for COVID-19 patients as needed.

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Government disregard for health care officials leaves Albertans at risk

November 26, 2020
EDMONTON

Government disregard for health care officials leaves Albertans at risk

Today’s story in the CBC reveals that the government has opted to follow political ideology rather than best medical advice when shaping Alberta’s COVID-19 response. According to secret audio recordings of several planning meetings of the Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) leaked to the CBC, the expert advice of Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, has been repeatedly undermined by the UCP government.

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Today’s new COVID-19 restrictions continue to fail Albertans

November 24, 2020
EDMONTON

Today’s new COVID-19 restrictions continue to fail Albertans

As per today’s government mandated restrictions and declaration of a state of public health emergency, Alberta has become a place where family members are not allowed to visit one another, but individuals and households can continue to go to casinos, bars or restaurants. Alberta has become the last province to enact a mask mandate, but it only pertains to indoor workplaces, and only in Edmonton, Calgary and surrounding areas.

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With passing of Bill 204, UCP ideology reigns over science & evidence

November 16, 2020 4:41 PM

November 16, 2020
EDMONTON

With passing of Bill 204, UCP ideology reigns over science & evidence

Today, in Alberta’s Legislature, we witnessed ideology win out over the well-being of all Albertans and Canadians. Following the Third Reading this afternoon, the legislative assembly passed Bill 204: Voluntary Blood Donations Repeal Act. In the midst of an unprecedented and worsening public health crisis, Alberta is now on track to allow the corporate collection and global export of Albertans’ plasma. 

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Bill 204 threatens & undermines our voluntary public blood system

November 03, 2020 12:52 PM

November 3, 2020
EDMONTON

Bill 204 threatens & undermines our voluntary public blood system

Back in March, Friends of Medicare warned Albertans that while our province was grappling with the beginnings of an unprecedented pandemic, private blood brokers were trying to find a way to profit from this dire situation. The Alberta government lobbyist registry showed that a big pharma interest group representing the private for-profit blood industry (Plasma Protein Therapeutics Association represented by Santis Health Inc), was attempting to persuade the government to repeal the Voluntary Blood Donation Act, which bans for-payment blood clinics in the province.

As expected, MLA Tany Yao soon introduced Bill 204: Voluntary Blood Donations Repeal Act, which is now expected for third reading on Monday, November 9. While Mr Yao has insisted that his Bill 204 will help address our domestic plasma supply needs, his mere three page bill contains no stipulations to guarantee that privately collected plasma will remain in Alberta or even Canada. In fact, private blood brokers make their profit on the international market, where they compete to sell their plasma to the highest bidder. In contrast, every single collection within our publicly funded blood system is guaranteed to be used to treat Canadian patients. 
 
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