Throne speech call for cooperation in health care a positive signal — HEU

News release

The Hospital Employees’ Union (CUPE) is hopeful that the government’s throne speech call for new cooperative relationships in health care will lead to talks aimed at preventing the loss of thousands of skilled, experienced workers from B.C. health care facilities.

“No government can solve the considerable challenges facing health care delivery on their own,” says HEU secretary-business manager Chris Allnutt. “And all British Columbians will benefit if this government is serious about developing a new cooperative approach to solving health care problems.

“In concrete terms, we’re hopeful that Premier Campbell’s government holds to its throne speech theme and `opens up’ talks with health employers and health unions to preserve taxpayers’ investment in the skills and experience of thousands of health care workers who are targeted for privatization.”

Allnutt also urged the government to reconsider its plans to implement means testing for Pharmacare in order to properly evaluate the impact of the recent federal-provincial health accord that includes new federal funding support for catastrophic drug coverage.

And the union also says that Victoria’s plans for public-private partnerships in health care are no panacea and will cost taxpayers more than traditionally procured hospitals.

-30- Contact: Mike Old, communications officer, 604-828-6771 (cell)