Alberta NDP’s Responses

1) How will your government improve the delivery of cancer care and other healthcare services in Alberta?

Alberta’s NDP has committed to ensuring that our public health care system improves after years of neglect by the PCs, so that Albertans get the care they need when they need it. Our Party has always been a vocal in the need to stabilize the system and ensure that we fix the capacity issues we have seen over the last several years by. We’ll start by:

I. Committing stable funding over the long-term and reserve the $1 billion dollar cut in the recent Prentice budget so that our health system can catch up and keep up with the growth our province has seen.

II. Build capacity for long-term care by building 2,000 long-term care spaces that will serve to take pressures off the acute care system

III. Cancelling plans for yet another AHS reorganization, and channeling the millions of dollars earmarked for that project into frontline care.

IV. Investing in strong, public homecare to keep people in their home, rather than in hospitals.

V. Helping families get better access to Primary Care Networks so that we can substantially increase the number of Albertans who have a family doctor.

Alberta’s NDP has committed to ensuring that residents of both major cities have access to integrative, all-under-one-roof cancer care centre, including treatment, care, and research. We know that this is the best model for cancer care, and that by integrating physical healing, cutting edge research, and whole-person care we can do our best to help Albertans in their fight.

2) Will your government continue to provide a publicly funded healthcare system or would it institute a private healthcare system?

The NDP stands firmly in support of publicly funded and delivered health care in this province. While other parties will take actions to circumvent the Canada Health Act, Alberta’s NDP understands the incredible power of a system that allows us to get the care we need, regardless of our walk of life. By strengthening these systems, we are strengthening the fabric of Alberta.

3) How will your government restructure healthcare delivery in Alberta?

Alberta’s NDP will work within the public system to ensure that our health system is focusing on frontline services. In order to do this, and avoid the chaos that we’ve seen created by near constant PC reorganizations, we are not committing to any major realignments of services in order to promote stability and growth within the system. One change that we would work toward, if given the opportunity, would be to work with physicians and other health professionals to expand access to Primary Care Networks. In particular, we would look to create opportunities for new patients to find family doctors, and for clinics to stay open longer hours.

4) How will your government ensure that cancer patients receive the services they need, including home care, financial assistance during recovery and for long-term side effects of cancer and/or treatment?

Alberta’s NDP has a strong plan to focus resources into homecare, strengthening it and moving more services under the public umbrella so that cancer survivors (and others) can have high quality, reliable, and accessible services. In terms of financial assistance during and after sickness, Alberta’s NDP has long been an advocate of ensuring that people are able to have their needs, both medically and otherwise, met if they get sick. The NDP believes that we can work to strengthen existing programs like Alberta Works, AISH (which the NDP fought to have raised and tied to inflation, and won), and working with federal partners to improve CPP disability benefits.

5) If elected, will your government commit to increasing the number of new cancer and other drugs approved for public reimbursement so that all Albertans have timely access to the drugs they need, and if so, how will this be accomplished?

Alberta’s NDP is committed to reversing PC cuts to Alberta’s prescription drug programs, and restore funding to our health system so that people can get the care they need. Our Party has always been a strong advocate of expanding our public system, and a strong voice across our province and country to move toward a publicly implemented Pharmacare program that would save Albertans money. By working on key issues of access to care while stabilizing a healthcare system that is straining from years of PC neglect, Alberta’s NDP is fighting to ensure that patients in our province get the highest quality, most advanced care possible. The recent PC budget cuts make this fight even more important and our platform provides the resources and commitments to take us forward in all areas of health care.