February 23, 2012
Ombudsman's Challenge Ignored
BC budget puts the
province amongst lowest for health spending
Released by Cupe HEU
Budget 2012: Silence on seniors' care, higher MSP premiums for
families, and B.C. slides to 9th place in in investment in its
citizens' health care.
B.C.'s largest health care union says the provincial budget
represents a lost opportunity to make strategic investments in
seniors care and in the health of its citizens.
The 43,000-member Hospital Employees' Union says the budget confirms
that the Clark government won't implement any of the substantial
recommendations made by the provincial ombudsperson Kim Carter last
week to improve seniors' care in B.C.
HEU secretary-business manager Bonnie Pearson says that it is
disappointing that the province did not take up the ombudsperson's
challenge to establish regulatory standards on basic care issues
like bathing frequency - or to implement minimum staffing
levels in the sector.
Pearson notes that nearly every health authority has failed to meet
the recommended staffing guidelines for residential care facilities,
and that they will continue to miss the mark without additional
investments in the sector.
The budget also confirms that B.C. families will see another four
per cent hike in MSP premiums next year and that for the first
time, the government will collect more than $2 billion through this
regressive health care tax.