Public Values

Current competitive bidding process failing Ontario's ailing seniors

Aging population needs equitable and effective homecare.

Rivier: High-quality homecare should be integrated into the continuum of healthcare services.August 18, 2011: Competitive bidding in Ontario's homecare system is causing thousands of Ontarians to go without the care they desperately need, says CUPE Ontario and the Ontario Health Coalition (OHC).

"The Ontario government must drop competitive bidding in homecare once and for all," says Fred Hahn, president of CUPE Ontario. "The Liberal government has failed to stop the chaos that competitive bidding causes and it has failed to create the public, not-for-profit homecare system Ontario needs."

The compulsory contracting-out of homecare services was introduced in the mid-1990s by the Mike Harris Progressive Conservative government, which included current party leader Tim Hudak. The Ontario Auditor General's 2010 Annual Report found homecare in Ontario to be inequitable, insufficient, and ineffectively measured and managed.

  The total number of seniors living in our communities will more than double in the next twenty years.

"We can turn this around by moving homecare under the principles of the Canada Health Act," says Marlene Rivier of the Ontario Health Coalition. "Appropriate homecare is a public good, not a commodity to be bought and sold for profit. Homecare should be integrated into the continuum of health care services and have enforceable, high-quality standards — like the rest of the healthcare system."

A news conference held yesterday is part of a province-wide media tour by CUPE Ontario in partnership with the Ontario Health Coalition to raise awareness about the disastrous competitive bidding model in homecare and to garner support for the elimination of this model once and for all.

A recent report from Ottawa's Council on Aging predicts that the total number of seniors living in our communities will more than double in the next twenty years, making the crisis in homecare all the more acute.

As the provincial election nears, CUPE Ontario calls on Ontarians to support the candidates who will fight for a public, not-for-profit homecare system in our province.

Links and sources
  Competitive bidding hurting homecare in Ontario

Posted: August 30, 2011

  Health care
  Public services

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