Mad about the system

Letter writer expresses dissatisfaction over our health care

Doesn’t it just cream your corn when you witness a situation that you have no control over? One knows there is a problem and it needs to be solved, however, helplessness seems to control the moment. Am I the only person with skull cramps caused by incomprehension of our health system?

While waiting to see a doctor at a Nelson Walk-in clinic, I exchanged pleasantries with two gentlemen. They both seemed distraught and in obvious pain. They had previously attended the Trail hospital emergency room.  Both patients were told that there would be a four-hour wait and one fellow was told to go to Nelson. The other fellow had already been triaged in Trail, but required immediate follow-up for severe pain. He could not wait for four hours.

Their personal physicians were on holidays and this set up a situation that is all too familiar. Now what do you do and where do you go? Coincidentally, they both decided on Nelson. This set the stage  for what is becoming a concern for many patients in the Kootenays. This in itself is understandable as we all know the system is overloaded.  The question is why?

We should remember that these waiting times in hospitals and clinics are not the fault of the health care workers as I am sure they are doing their best to alleviate what is a huge problem in our province and apparently across the nation. We must ask why the health care system is breaking down. There are many questions that should be asked, however, it seems that when an MLA takes on the health minister it falls on deaf ears. This then becomes simply rhetoric and negligence or at the very least, incompetence. The basics in health care remain the same, universal coverage for medically necessary health care services provided on need rather than the ability to pay.

My very real concern comes from hearing over and over that seniors are overwhelming the system. This may be factual, but “so what?” Get a grip folks. If there is a need for more care and attention to seniors, deal with it, step up to the plate and do something, anything. It is fantastic that we are aging. We live in a great country, a great province and the Kootenay area is second to none. Why do I get the feeling that the government is dumping on the folks who have paid their taxes all their lives and have contributed to society only to be used as a scapegoat for what I would call incompetence at its highest level?  Seniors do not want special treatment, just a fair shake, some compassion and some understanding in their time of need. The real problem is with our elected politicians. It appears that an agenda of appeasing corporations and pharmaceutical companies takes precedence over what should be their primary objective. That objective must be to attend to the emotional and physical health of Canada’s citizens.

This country should be throwing every single nickel at the health care issue not squandering tax-payers dollars on raises for politicians, ridiculous pension benefits for politicians and protecting corrupt politicians. It is time to bring the hammer down. If not now, when? Why are they always fixing the blame and never the problem?

In 2002 the Roy Romanow report basically highlighted the fact that “Times are a changin’” and we had better get with the program or there would be problems and here we are in that exact situation.

If the politicians in power cannot solve these issues, it is time for them to vacate the office they hold. I am confident that they can do better, but it won’t happen as long as our politicians are more equal than the rest of us. When was the last time anyone noticed a politician waiting in an emergency room or clinic for four hours or more?

My wish is that the condescension by those who hold the power over our health care stops immediately. Canada is not a third world country and we deserve better.

 

-Leon Thiessen

Harrop, B.C.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A woman wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 uses walking sticks while walking up a hill, in New Westminster, B.C., on Sunday, November 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Interior Health reports 83 more COVID-19 infections overnight

46 cases are now associated with a COVID-19 community cluster in Revelstoke

Castlegar City Councilors Dan Rye and Sue Heaton-Sherstibitoff at Winterfest 2019. Photo: Betsy Kline
Join the Castlegar Making Spirits Bright challenge

Go all out with your Christmas decorating and send us a photo to enter

Glacier Gymnastics head coach Sandra Long says she doesn’t understand why her sport is currently shut down while others are allowed to operate. Photo: Tyler Harper
‘It is bewildering’: Nelson sports leaders call out provincial shut down

Indoor group classes for activities such as gymnastics and dance are on hold

Slocan Valley communities struggling with the need for high-speed internet should consider Kaslo’s model, according to the Kaslo infoNet Society. Photo: Black Press
Follow Kaslo’s lead for fibre service, says proponent

Tim Ryan of Kaslo infoNet Society says bringing high-speed internet to rural homes is possible

A tongue-in-cheek message about wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 on a sign outside a church near Royal Columbia Hospital, in New Westminster, B.C., on Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection count climbs back up to 656

20 more people in hospital, active cases still rising

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Interior Health said its new toll-free line will help people connect to health-care services. (File)
Interior Health expands toll-free line to improve access to community care

By calling1-800-707-8550, people can be connected to several health-care services

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
B.C. researchers launch study to test kids, young adults for COVID-19 antibodies

Kids and youth can often be asymptomatic carriers of the novel coronavirus

A sign is seen this past summer outside the Yunesit’in Government office west of Williams Lake reminding visitors and members to stay safe amid the COVID-19 pandemic. (Rebecca Dyok photo)
B.C. First Nation leaders await privacy commissioner decision on COVID-19 information

Release of life-saving data cannot wait, says coalition of First Nations

MLA Jennifer Whiteside is B.C.’s new minister of education. She is speaking out against Chilliwack school trustee Barry Neufeld and asking him to resign. (Black Press)
New education minister calls on Chilliwack trustee to resign

Whiteside echoes former minister’s promise to look at options to remove Barry Neufeld

Peter Beckett. ~ File photo
Supreme Court of Canada to decide if it will hear appeal in 2010 wife murder trial

Peter Beckett has stood trial twice for murder in connection with the death of his wife, Laura Letts-Beckett

Most Read