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The courts will not save Canada's sick health system; Dr Day is not a gadfly

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The BC ruling, after grinding through the courts for a decade, is but a reminder that Canada's sick health care system will not be cured by its dysfunctional legal system. To expect our system to be saved by the courts amounts to, at best, magical thinking, while more and more Canadians who suffer in silence and risk dying from inability to access essential care will "just have to wait".

The real question is when will Canadians hold governments accountable for results, so we the people as taxpayers and all patients will be able to access necessary and life-saving medical services?

In the Globe and Mail Andre Picard states, "Only forward-looking public policy can ensure timely and equitable access to care, and that’s where we should we be focusing our efforts, not on pesky gadflies like Dr. Day." Yes, focus on fixing the problems. But Dr Brian Day is not a gadfly, he is an outstanding Canadian physician who devoted his life and career to improving health care, a trailblazer, innovator and pioneer in Orthopedic surgery, leader as past President of the Canadian Medical Association, entrepreneur and founder of Cambie Surgery Center that expanded surgical capacity to deliver services to countless patients including the Workers Compensation Board, etc. for decades. Dr Day could have easily taken his talents to the US or any other country, but he chose to stay in Canada, to serve and fight for patients.

Regardless of the outcome of this court case, and whether people agree or disagree with his views, Dr Brian Day did not lose - he stood up for what he believed.

Clearly, the new thinking and innovative ideas for system reforms must come from us, moving from being passive bystanders to becoming a part of the solution and by raising our voices to save our own lives. Canadians deserve no less. 

Caroline Wang, MD, MPA

The Globe and Mail, Andre Picard, September 10, 2020
Globe&Mail: B.C. health care ruling reminds us that courts cannot improve medicare or fix wait times