Letter: Joining in on the uproar regarding medicare in British Columbia

Re: Amber Buxton’s letter in the June 22 Williams Lake Tribune, Health care crisis should be leading to uproar.

Editor:

Re: Amber Buxton’s letter in the June 22 Williams Lake Tribune, Health care crisis should be leading to uproar.

You can add me, a cancer survivor, to its uproar.

In March of 2001 a Williams Lake doctor newly arrived from Saskatchewan, as Amber is, suspected I had cancer. A Williams Lake biopsy sample, thank you, Dr. Brossard, sent to Kamloops and Vancouver confirmed my non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. I was 39.

My doctor didn’t know the formalities of booking cancer treatment but, luckily for me, she called the Vancouver Cancer Centre and said she was sending me.

The Vancouver cancer doctor, Joseph Connors, world renowned, found 17 tumours in my lymph glands.

One tumour was beside my liver. I had a 40 per cent chance of surviving five years. I am still here 15 years later.

The summer of 2001 entailed six trips to Vancouver for chemotherapy, including one drug from tropical plants and another drug, then experimental, made using cloned mouse cells.

The Vancouver protocol is a national standard for cancer treatment.

This is my first local newspaper letter since 2001, when I wrote that I would fight for medicare.

I join Amber’s uproar. My experience shows a flaw in medicare, still a system far superior to the money-driven circus that denies medical care to tens of millions in the U.S.

B.C. charges medical premiums; even Alberta, where I was born and raised, stopped charging premiums.

Premiums bring money, but cost more public money in acute care later, for people whom premiums dissuade from seeking medical help.

The medical billing system is a major, expensive flaw. Doctors, like teachers, and I am a recovering teacher, are public servants. Does a teacher bill the government for each child she teaches? No.

A child comes to a public school, albeit in a system undermined by decades of government and school administration myopia, and media shilling for privatized education. The child gets a teacher and, sometimes, an education. I had a doctor here in 2001. She got me from retiring Dr. Grace. She later handed me to another doctor and moved away.

That doctor later did the same. Me? A medical football. That doctor remains my doctor, my third female doctor in a row. Every year she examines me to see if the cancer is back. So far, so alive.

Amber Buxton should have a family doctor or, at least, a walk-in clinic — cheaper than an emergency ward.

Saskatchewan intended a clinic system when it began medicare in 1962, against stiff doctor resistance.

Those doctors are all likely stiffs now.

Saskatchewan and, later, Canada, retained a major role for the fee-for-service system, a mistake not made by England, by Europe, generally, or by other countries with socialized medicine. Socialism isn’t evil; it’s evolutionary.

Humans evolved working together for common goals.

Let the uproar for medicare continue and, succeed, finally.

Michael Wynne

Williams Lake

Just Posted

Drivers continue to go through rough areas on Highway 20 where repairs have been made to address areas impacted by a historical slide. (Angie Mindus photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Highway 20, Dog Creek Road repairs won’t be completed until later this summer

Geotechnical and hydrotechnical investigation continues

Mackey Pierce stands with two of the four paintings she has in the Cariboo Art Society exhibit at the Station House Gallery. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Cariboo Art Society member exhibit June show at Station House Gallery

Title ‘This and That’, the show reflects the art of 11 members

A tent housing a mobile vaccination clinic. (Interior Health/Contributed)
Over 5K jabbed at Interior Health mobile COVID-19 vaccine clinics

The clinics have made stops in more than 40 communities since launching last week

(Angie Mindus photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Lakecity Secondary School returns to semester system this fall

The quarterly system was in place this past year

A small pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins pass by close to shore in Campbell River June 16, 2021. Still capture from video courtesy of Kimberly Hart
VIDEO: Dolphin sunset captured from Vancouver Island shore

Spectacular setting for view of travelling pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins

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

Police are asking for public assistance in locating Anthony Graham who has been charged with the murders of Kamloops brothers Carlo and Erick Fryer. (RCMP photo)
2 charged, suspect at large in killings of B.C. brothers linked to gang activity: RCMP

Kamloops brothers Erick and Carlo Fryer were found deceased in May on a remote Okanagan road

Albert Health Minister Tyler Shandro and Alberta Premier Jason Kenney unveil an opening sign after speaking about the Open for Summer Plan and next steps in the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, in Edmonton, Friday, June 18, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Alberta 1st province in Canada to lift all COVID-19 public health restrictions

70.2% of eligible citizens 12 and older in the province have received a dose of the vaccine

Fraser Health registered nurse Ramn Manan draws a dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine into a syringe at a walk-up vaccination clinic at Bear Creek Park, in Surrey, B.C., on Monday, May 17, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Honour our fathers’ with COVID-19 vaccine protection, B.C. urges

109 new cases Friday, 75 per cent of 12 and up immunized

(Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)
Trutch Avenue in Chilliwack to be renamed to remove racist taint

New name to have Indigenous significance as Chilliwack takes new step toward reconciliation

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is seen during a joint news conference following the EU-Canada Summit, in Brussels, Belgium, Tuesday June 15, 2021. Trudeau says Canada is on track now to have 68 million doses delivered by the end of July, which is more than enough to fully vaccinate all 33.2 million Canadians over the age of 12. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Vaccine deliveries enough to fully vaccinate all eligible Canadians by end of July

Three in four eligible Canadians now have their first dose, nearly one in five fully vaccinated.

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam listens to a question during a news conference, in Ottawa, Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021. The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases attributed to the highly contagious Delta variant grew in Canada this week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s public health agency reports spike in confirmed cases of Delta variant

More than 2,000 cases of the variant confirmed across all 10 provinces and in one territory

Most Read