Do You Hear What I Hear?
It’s the voice of patients everywhere.
Each day there are stories in the news about the problems with our public health care system. Patients are finally voicing their concerns and people are realizing that although no health care system is perfect ours can be better.
The popular notion that our health care is “free” seems to serve as some perverse justification for waiting lists, lower standards of care, nonsensical policies and a lack of transparency and accountability for costs and performance.
Health care is not free. Our aging population, a decreasing workforce and increasing rates of health care spending means that our current taxpayer funded health care system is not sustainable. Sadly, it is failing both patients and providers. Change is necessary.
Perhaps one of the greatest tools for bringing about change is the Internet with its ability to provide instant information and communication between people across geographical boundaries. Canadians are sharing information and becoming more knowledgeable about our health care system and what impact it has on their personal health journey.
Each province and territory is responsible for administering its own publicly funded health care insurance plan and delivering its own health care services. This leads to differences in coverage and services across Canada and highlights the need for local involvement in bringing specific changes to a region.
The patient voice is organizing as groups aiming to make valuable contributions for improving our health care system are forming across the country. Watch for upcoming articles on patient engagement to find out what people are doing in your area and how you can get involved.
The patient voice is becoming louder. It is requesting data and information, sharing experiences, contributing to health policy and evoking change.
I hear the patient voice.