#ChristineElliott; #ImprovingHealthcareand EndingHallwayMedicine; #Dr.RuebenDevlin
Ottawa, Jan 31 (Canadian-Media): Today, Christine Elliott, Ontario's Deputy Premier and Ontario's Minister of Health and Long-Term Care issued the following statement:
Christine Elliot Dr. Rueben Devlin (right)
"On behalf of the Ontario government, I want to thank the Premier's Council on Improving Healthcare and Ending Hallway Medicine, including the Council's Chair, Dr. Rueben Devlin, and the council members, for developing their first report. I look forward to reviewing its findings.
Our Government for the People believes that everyone in Ontario deserves to have access to the services they need at home, in the community or at a hospital. That's why we're continuing to work with our partners in health care, including the Premier's Council on Improving Healthcare and Ending Hallway Medicine, as we develop our long-term health care strategy.
We will continue to listen to patients, families and frontline providers, and we will create a health care system that works for the people of Ontario."
#NationalHealth; #occupationalcancer; #DrPaulDemers; #CancerCareOntario; #OntarioMinistryofLabour; #WorkplaceSafetyandInsuranceBoard; #Ontario, #Canada
Toronto, Jan 26 (Canadian-Media): Ontario is conducting a review of occupational cancer by engaging internationally recognized expert, Dr Paul Demers through Cancer Care Ontario, to ensure best practices and the most up-to-date information with respect to compensation, media reports said.
"I am very happy to lead this review...While recognition of individual cases can be challenging, it is important that we move forward using the best and most up-to-date scientific evidence," Dr. Demers said upon the review's launch.
Created reportedly in April 1995, and formally launched in 1997, Cancer Care Ontario is an agency of the provincial Government of Ontario, governed under the provisions of the Cancer Act, and is responsible for improving cancer services.
Three main questions that would be considered for review and recommendations to the Ontario's Ministry of Labour would include: determination of the best scientific evidence if a cancer is work related; best practices that Ontario should adopt; and Ministry of Labour's criteria in developing legislative policy around occupational cancer.
The review and recommendations will also help the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB).
"Occupational cancers must be treated with the same seriousness and importance as physical injuries," said Laurie Scott, Minister of Labour. "This review will help guide us going forward."
The government is also taking action to ensure working Ontarians stay healthy and safe on the job in the future by launching an Occupational Disease and Illness Prevention Strategy.
The ministry is working collaboratively with the WSIB and its Health and Safety Association partners and others establish partnerships to help improve cost-effective and timely management of occupational illness in the province.
In a study led by the Institute for Work and Health published in 2017, it was revealed that the average costs (direct and indirect) of a worker’s compensation claim for mesothelioma in Ontario is $532 844, including survivor benefits.
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)
#CannabisLegalisation. #Canada, #priceincrease; #StatisticsCanada
Toronto, Jan 9 (Canadian-Media): Statistics Canada (SC) had reported an increase of more than 17 percent in cannabis price , since it was legalized for recreational use on Oct 17, media reports said.
SC, the Government of Canada agency, formed in 1971 with its headquarters in Ottawa, with its statistics help better understand Canada's population, resources, economy, society, and its culture.
With the use of an updated version of its crowdsourcing app, SC collected price information prior to legalization on Oct. 17 and compared it to the average price between that day and the end of 2018.
The two main factors for the rise or pot prices Taxes and lack of competition, as found by the North American affairs manager for the Consumer Choice Centre a consumer advocacy group that monitors regulatory policy around the globe, David Clement, Consumer advocate, said the rising price of the pot was no surprise.
In addition, said Clement, imposition of provincial and federal taxes, plus all the fees and licensing costs in producers are passed on to end users.
"It costs half a billion a year to enforce the rules and regulations in the Cannabis Act, so in order to generate the revenues to cover that they've implemented fees and licences on licensed producers."
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)
#Carpenter Hospice; #Christine Elliott; #Jane McKenna; #Effie Triantafilopoulos; #end-of-life care
Toronto, Dec 11 (Canadian-Media): An announcement was made today at Carpenter Hospice jointly by Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health and Long-Term Care, Effie Triantafilopoulos, Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister, and Jane McKenna, MPP for Burlington regarding Ontario's decision to move forward with its development of long-term transformational health care strategy by investing nearly $33.6 million to build 193 new hospice beds, media reports said.
"With early investments like these, our government...is moving forward quickly to address challenges facing the health care system as we develop our long-term transformational health care strategy, said Elliot."
"I am proud our government is committed to improving access to comfortable, end-of-life care in communities across the province like Burlington," said McKenna.
Ontario government also plans to provide each year $20.3 million in operational funding for nursing, personal support, and other services after these beds open and an additional $90 million in 2018-19 to build 1,100 beds and spaces in hospitals and the community, including 640 new beds and spaces.
Hospices provides environment of comfort, where they can be close to loved ones and focuses on relieving suffering and providing services like psychological, spiritual and bereavement support.
"This investment is also helping to address hallway health care...to alleviate the pressures on our health care system," said Triantafilopoulos.
Effie Triantafilopoulos/official site
Ontario is also adding in the next five years 6,000 new long-term care beds – the first wave of more than 15,000 new long-term care beds.
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)
#CanadianPharmacistsAssociation; #DrugShortagesCanada; #PhilEmberley; #JacalynDuffin; #AbacusData; #IrisGorfinkel
Toronto, Dec 10 (Canadian-Media): A survey commissioned by the Canadian Pharmacists Association (CPA) that Canada continues to grapple with unprecedented drug shortages affecting one in four adults in the country in the last three years, media reports said.
11 percent of surveyed said they themselves had experienced a drug shortage, 10 percent said they knew a family member who had and nine percent said they knew someone other than family who had been affected.
Dr. Jacalyn Duffin, a hematologist and medical historian at Queen's University who studies the drug shortage issue, believes the problem affects many more people than the pharmacists association's findings suggest — because the survey questioned a relatively small number of 1,500 people from the general public, who may or may not be frequent users of medication.
Duffin said "the pill-taking population" — such as seniors, who tend to have chronic conditions requiring medication --
were not targeted thereby bringing down the number of people whose prescriptions had to be changed due to a shortage.
This lack of clear data fails to accurately measure the real impact of drug shortages on people.
EpiPen -- used to halt life-threatening allergic reactions to insect bites, nuts and other foods -- shortage in summer was an alarming concern to patients and parents of children who had to face life-threatening allergies, said Phil Emberley, CPA's director of practice advancement and research, who also works as a pharmacist in Ottawa.
In November of this year, Canada again faced serious problems of chronic drug shortage Wellbutrin, a widely used antidepressant and the shortages of various blood pressure medications, including ARBs (angiotensin receptor blockers).
Drug Shortages Canada, the federal government's official tracking website revealed shortage of more than 1,690 medications.
Although Health Canada had repeatedly said it was aware of the drug shortage issue and working to find solutions to the expert finding of the manufacturing issues to marketing and distribution decisions by pharmaceutical companies
Dr. Iris Gorfinkel, a Toronto family physician, said the process of finding an alternative medication is not cost-effective and added,
"It resonates very deeply because as a family doctor it's my job to make sure the patients get the drugs they need...Sometimes the substitute drug doesn't work...or has side effects that were not a feature of the original medication... Some people have died, said Gorfinkel."
Another potential danger of drug shortages is people resorting to unregulated online sources to try to get their medications, said Emberley.
"To go to a website in a situation where there's a drug shortage ... and simply pick something out, there's significant risk with that," Emberley said. "Pharmacists are concerned that Canadians will resort to that out of desperation."
This online survey was conducted by Abacus Data between Nov 9 and 13, 2018, using a random sample of people from a set of "partner panels" (consisting of people who have agreed to complete surveys).
The margin of error for a comparable probability-based random sample of the same size is plus or minus 2.53 percent, 19 times out of 20.
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)
#unprovenstemcelltreatments; #LeighTurner; #HealthCanada; #RegenerativeMedicine; #Food and Drug Act
Ottawa, Sep 27 (Canadian-Media): According to a study published yesterday numerous unlicensed clinics in Canada were offering unproven stem cell treatments for a wide variety of medical conditions, media reports said.
Stem cells give rise to many different cell types in the body and offer the potential for treating a wide array of diseases.
But rigorous research is still needed to determine the efficacy of these treatments, said regenerative medicine experts.
Leigh Turner, Canadian-born researcher, and an associate professor at the University of Minnesota's Center for Bioethics was able to identified 30 businesses marketing stem cell therapies at 43 clinics, unapproved by Health Canada -- the federal department of Canada responsible for national public health -- across the country.
Turner's study, published Wednesday in the journal Regenerative Medicine, involved an extensive online search for direct-to-consumer websites offering stem cell therapies to Canadians.
Turner researched 24 Clinics, advocating their treatments over the internet offering stem cell treatments for orthopedic and musculoskeletal conditions and sports-related injuries including, 24 in Ontario -- 17 clinics in the Greater Toronto Area (which includes Toronto and nearby cities) alone -- eight in British Columbia, six in Alberta, three in Quebec, one each in Nova Scotia and Saskatchewan.
It was also found out that patients typically paid large amount of money from their own pocket as the services of these clinics are also not covered by provincial health insurance plans.
And in some cases, such unresearched interventions can do harmful, Turner said.
Turner's paper challenged Health Canada to enforce regulations and to crack down on clinics making claims about effectiveness that are not based on scientific evidence.
Health Canada had ordered to stop illegal practices of a few clinics and is following up on other clinics and added any non-compliance to these orders would be strictly dealt with.
Under the Food and Drug Act, all stem cells therapies are considered drugs and must meet specific requirements before they can be marketed in Canada.
Only one advanced stem cell product, Prochymal for the treatment of graft-versus-host disease, has been approved for sale in Canada.
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)
Ottawa, Sept 26, (Canadian-Media): In observance of first Ontario's Rowan's Concussion Law Day today, Ontario is commitment to making sports safer for kids by developing a multimedia campaign that will raise awareness about concussion safety, media reports said.
Rowan's Law Day is commemorated, in honour of the memory of 17-year-old Rowan Stringer, who died after sustaining multiple concussions while playing rugby with her Ottawa high school.
Since then, her family had advocated for change.
Lisa MacLeod, Minister of Children, Community, and Social Services, sponsored Rowan's Concussion Law in the Legislative Assembly.
On March 7, 2018, Ontario passed Rowan's Law (Concussion Safety), 2018 and related amendments to the Education Act.
This new legislation, which received all-party support, is intended to protect amateur athletes by improving concussion safety on the field and at school.
This day is observed on the last Wednesday in September to raise awareness about concussions in sport.
"I am pleased that our new government is carrying on with the work that was started in 2015," said MacLeod.
"Rowan was a very positive kid. She wanted to help the kids and her plan was to be a pediatric nurse," her father said Wednesday. "We look at this as helping her deliver on what she would've done in her life, making a difference in people's lives."
Concussions represented 21 percent of student injuries treated by a doctor or nurse, said Sylvia Jones, Ontario's minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport and added that this awareness campaign would help students understand what to do when they suspect they've sustained a concussion, and gives educators and coaches the tools they need to seek help for their students.
"We're not talking about discouraging people from playing rugby or from playing on the ice," she said. "What we want to do is make sure that they understand what a concussion looks like."
Rowan's Law created new rules aimed at protecting injured students from further injury, and introduced new protocols that aim to prevent concussions in the first place.
But the work isn't done yet — the regulations that accompany the bill still have to be written, and a system to track concussion data has yet to be established.
Stringer said there have been many tough days after losing Rowan, but he hopes the outcome will help save lives.
"Her death was completely preventable," he said. "That drives you to make sure that you do everything you can so that it doesn't happen again."
"Reducing the risk of concussions is always the goal. But concussions happen and knowing what to do - whether you're an athlete, a parent, a coach or a teacher - can save lives," said Sylvia. "We'll honour Rowan Stringer's memory by launching a province-wide multimedia campaign to raise awareness about concussion safety."
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)
#RachelNotley; #Alberta, #Canada; #HIV/AIDS; #SarahHoffman; #PrEP; Calgary'sPrideWeek; #DavieBuyersClub; #Humanimmunodeficiencyvirus; #acquiredimmunedeficiencysyndrome
Alberta, Sep 3 (Canadian-Media): An announcement was made Saturday by Alberta Premier Rachel Notley during a Calgary's Pride fundraising event in Calgary that beginning Oct. 1, Alberta will be providing universal coverage for PrEP, an HIV-prevention drug, which is up to 99 percent effective at stopping the transmission of the disease, media reports said.
Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is spread primarily by unprotected sex, contaminated blood transfusions, unsterilized needles, and from mother to child during pregnancy, delivery, or breastfeeding.
The virus weakens the immune system and is not curable, it can only be managed with treatment.
If untreated, the virus can lead to acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS), which severely damages immune system.
According to non-profit organization HIV Community Link, out of about 80,500 Canadians diagnosed with HIV, about one in five people don't know they have been infected.
In Alberta alone last year, more than 200 people were diagnosed.
The generic of the medication is $250 per month — about $8.30 a day — and the brand name, Truvada, can cost up to $1,000 per month.
The high cost of PrEP is a barrier for many people, and Notley said that by making it more accessible to public would reduce the incidence ofs of HIV.
Alberta is the seventh province in Canada to introduce PrEp coverage.
Along with coverage, Notley said with the government's plan to increase the number of physicians, designated to prescribe PrEP, it will be available across the province.
Alex Smith. a Calgary nurse and founder of the Davie Buyers Club, a website and a guide that helps people to access PrEP and shows Canadians how to order a 90-day supply of the medication.
90-day supply of the medication is the maximum legal quantity for personal use that can be imported from India, Thailand and Singapore into Canada.
Further details on how coverage will be rolled out in the coming week will be provided by Sarah Hoffman, Alberta's Health Minister, said Notley,
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)
#federallegalizationofcannabis; #Ontario; #onlineretailchannel; #privateretailmodel; #VicFedeli; #CarolineMulroney; #OfficialOntarioCannabisRetailerSeal; #OntarioCannabisStore; #zero-tolerancepolicy; #Manitoba; #Saskatchewan; #Alberta
Ottawa, Aug 14 (Canadian-Media): Following the federal legalization of cannabis on October 17, Ontario will immediately introduce an online retail channel for cannabis, to be followed by a private retail model by April 1, 2019, media reports said.
Details about how the province will manage cannabis retail following the federal government's decision to legalize the drug effective October 17, 2018 were shared yesterday by Minister of Finance Vic Fedeli and Attorney General Caroline Mulroney.
Combination of online and regulated private retail for child safety and to eliminate the illegal market would be prioritized.
The use of Official Ontario Cannabis Retailer Seal to identify licensed retailers and providers would facilitate consumers to purchas federally quality controlled products from a legitimate retailer.
Starting on October 17, consumers 19 and older will be able to purchase cannabis via an online retail platform provided by the Ontario Cannabis Store.
A verification system that will ensure safe at home delivery for cannabis products would be in place for the Ontario Cannabis Store (OCS) online channel to meet the federally imposed obligation to make provinces ready for retail sales for the start of legalization.
"We will be ready to put in place a safe, legal system for cannabis retail that will protect consumers," said Mulroney. "We will also be ready to undermine the illegal market and protect Ontario's roads. Most importantly of all, we will be ready to protect our kids."
"Throughout this process we have held fast to some non-negotiable principles: Public safety is paramount," said Fedeli. "We will make sure our youth are safe; our roads are safe and that we work with our municipalities to ensure our neighbourhoods are safe."
Ministers also announced to begin consultations -- with municipalities, Indigenous communities, law enforcement, public health advocates, businesses and consumer groups and representatives of the other provinces with private retail -- in advance to opening up a tightly regulated private retail model for cannabis that will be launched by April 1, 2019 .
"The Government of Ontario will not be in the business of running physical cannabis stores," said Fedeli. "Instead, we will work with private sector businesses to build a safe, reliable retail system that will divert sales away from the illegal market."
Private retailers will have to follow a series of provincial rules, such as prohibiting the sale of cannabis to anyone under the age of 19.
Ontario will begin to consult on a number of rules all retailers will be mandated to follow including set hours of operation and staff training. Federal law lays out numerous other retail requirements, including restricted advertising, that products are not visible to children, and that all sales must be made over the counter.
The Ministers also announced a zero-tolerance policy, including severely escalating fines, for any retailer or dispensary who continues to operate in the illicit markets.
It is illegal to drive drug-impaired and it’s just as dangerous as driving drunk.
Police officers will be authorized to use oral fluid screening devices at roadside to enforce the law.
On October 17, 2018, Ontario will enact new measures.
New road safety laws include serious penalties that will increase consequences and costs for those who drive under the influence of cannabis and other drugs. Ontario will have zero-tolerance for impaired young, novice or commercial drivers.
Consumers will only be allowed to use recreational cannabis in a private residence, including the outdoor space of a home. Recreational cannabis use will not be allowed in any public spaces, workplaces or motorized vehicles.
The government will provide municipalities with a one-time window under which they can choose to opt-out of permitting physical cannabis retail stores within their boundaries. The provincial government will provide $40 million to municipalities over two years to help local governments keep their communities safe.
"In order to protect our communities — we have to work closely with our municipalities. In fact, they are our essential partners," concluded Fedeli. "We are committed to creating a safe retail model that eliminates the illegal cannabis market in Ontario. We are taking a balanced and responsible approach to building a system that works."
Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta are also moving ahead with a private model for retail storefronts to help eliminate the illegal market. Ontario will work with our partners to build on what they learn as we consult on our private model.
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)
#medicalassistanceindying; #HealthCanada; #GinettePetitpasTaylor
Ottawa, Aug 9 (Canadian-Media): Final regulations in Canada Gazette, Part II that create a federal pan-Canadian monitoring system on medical assistance in dying were published today by the Government of Canada, media reports said.
These regulations, however, will come into force November 1, 2018
Medical assistance in dying being a personal issue for all Canadians, addressing these should be done, says Government of Canada, with utmost compassion and empathy.
"Medical assistance in dying is a sensitive, complex issue and many Canadians have deeply-held views on the subject. We are committed to ensuring that Canadians who choose medical assistance in dying have access to these services. These regulations promote transparency and will help us monitor how this service is being implemented across the country."
said Ginette Petitpas Taylor, Federal Minister of Health.
Ginette Petitpas Taylor/Facebook
The legislation that allowed eligible Canadian adults to request medical assistance in dying was passed by the Parliament on June 17, 2016, and is now part of the Criminal Code, according to the eligibility requirements and safeguards in the law.
Since then 3,714 medically assisted deaths have taken place in Canada.
Physicians and nurse practitioners should receive receive written requests for medical assistance in dying, and for pharmacists who dispense medication for assisted dying to prevent them from accusations of criminal offence.
The regulations set out reporting requirements for physicians and nurse practitioners.
Any personal data collected will be protected under the federal Privacy Act.
According to the latest data, medically assisted deaths account for approximately 1.07 percent of all deaths nationally,
majority of them were between 56 and 90 years old, with average age of approximately 73 years.
This information would be used in publishing Annual reports on Canada's medical assistance in dying, including the number of requests received, the number of medically assisted deaths and the number of people found ineligible.
The regulations come into force on November 1, 2018, and providers could familiarise themselves with new reporting requirements until that date..
Transparency and public trust should be the criteria in implementing legislation across Canada.
Wishes of the dying individuals should be clearly understood while monitoring assisted dying.
Health Canada plans to produce interim reports until the permanent monitoring and reporting system becomes operational.
Annual federal reporting using the data collected under the Regulations is expected to begin in 2019.
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)