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Privatization scheme bribery case ends with guilty plea on least serious charge

A series of criminal trials over a bribery scandal over a P3 privatization scheme ended last week with people admitting that $22.5 million in bribes were paid, but with no one being convicted of actually paying them. For those naïve enough to believe that the justice system does a good job of policing the privatization industry, it was a very bad week.

Source: PSI

The idea of a partial privatization of Canada’s health system

A senior official of the Ontario Medical Association, Dr. Charles S. Shaver, has floated the idea of a partial privatization of Canada’s health system in an op-ed. “One thing Canada can do less expensively than the United States is deliver health care. Much more controversial is whether to amend the Canada Health Act to permit a limited amount of privatization for residents of Canada. Each provincial medical association could coordinate this by polling its members and asking persons to identify themselves if they have ever worked in nations with blended public/private health care systems. Those with first-hand knowledge of such systems would be invited to participate in town hall meetings across each province. They would field questions concerning the pros and cons of health delivery in each country. If the public then became more receptive to modifications of our current single-payer system, politicians might more openly support these proposals.”

No evidence that P3s will save money or be in best interest of province’s people

The NDP is denouncing the Ontario government for declaring that it will it will use a public-private design, build, finance, and maintenance P3 model to build the Waterford hospital replacement. NDP Leader Gerry Rogers “says EY was paid $1.7 million to evaluate the best financial model for building a P3 facility in Corner Brook. EY drew up comparison budgets and then recommended a P3 project. Government then gave the same firm the procurement contract for this new project. ‘Can he explain this very apparent conflict of interest?’ Rogers asked of the Premier. ‘Will he invite the Auditor General to review the P3 contracts now going forward and report to the House on her findings?’”

Source: NL NDP

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Private Clinics and the Threat to Public Medicare in Canada. Results of Surveys with Private Clinics and Patients

The Ontario Health Coalition has released a report on private healthcare clinics and how they are a threat to Canada's public Medicare system. “The report calls on federal and provincial governments to recommit themselves to the Canada Health Act, to stop illegal health fees for patients and to impose penalties on provinces that don't protect their residents. The report also calls for provincial governments to put a halt on the privatization of public and non-profit hospital services, increase hospital capacity and increase health funding. The report also recommends that governments at all levels must protect public health care from international trade agreements through a general carve out for all healthcare services. Private for-profit clinics are cutting a second tier into Canada's public healthcare system, a representative with a provincial healthcare watchdog group says. And, in many cases, what they’re doing is illegal, said Peter Boyle, a volunteer with the Ontario Health Coalition.” OPSEU President Warren (Smokey) Thomas says “these private clinics should not be profiting off the sick and elderly. It's outrageous and unethical, and that's why we will continue to fight against privatization in all its forms.

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Privatization Nation The Canada-wide Failure of Privatization, Outsourcing and Public-Private Partnerships

The Report examines some of the most egregious failures of privatization in the country over the past few years. The report recommends that governments’ adopt much broader criteria when considering the privatization option to ensure that the wider public interest is taken into account. Governments’ should also recognize the growing movement to return formerly privatized assets and services to public control – what has been called “re-municipalization” or “in-sourcing – that has been gaining speed across the globe over the past decade. The report highlights some of the successful re-muncipalization and in-sourcing efforts that have occurred more recently in Canada.

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