Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter ... and other things!

Happy Easter to all,

I've been fairly quiet on here lately.  I guess we can assume that no news is good news.  I suppose its true.  I have been very busy in the past month.  Managed to squeeze in a trip to Calgary in an amongst a bunch of meetings and trying to keep all of the balls in the air at home.  Busy is good...keeps me out of trouble.

Thankfully, Russell has been doing great.  His eyes look great after his eye surgery and we are very hopeful that the correction is permanent.  His biggest achievement of late is that he has finally made it onto a growth chart.  We have been getting close for a while now and we finally made into onto the curve.  It's amazing to be average!  Nicole starts soccer in a couple of weeks so that will be one other thing "to do."

About the election...

Inevitably health care comes up in these elections.  I'll save everyone lots of hassle...want to solve health care problems?  It's called cash!  You can be a little more efficient or hire a doctor here or there and tweak the system...bottom line is you need tons o' cash.  Any idea why we had to go to Edmonton for Russell's and Susan's care...I'll give you a guess.  They have gobs of cash in their province and they can recruit and hire big name Doctors and pour cash into Alberta Health Services.  It is also well known that Alberta Health is one of the more ineffciciently run provincial health care programs.  So I will make a bold logical step...strong economy = better health care.  It's not complicated. 

If I have learned anything since getting intimately involved with health care is the huge cost, in dollars, it takes to keep someone alive.  Everyone knows about the aging population and that people are living longer.  People do not often talk about kids like Russell who would never see their first birthday had it not been for new (and very expensive) technology.  I would love to see Russell's bill for our stay in Edmonton.  I know a few facts.  Our basic stay in hospital cost the Manitoba Taxpayer about $1400.00 per day.  That is just a bed...nothing special.  I was told that the cost of a stay in PICU can nearly double.  Then add the cost of two open heart surgeries, dozens of procedures, and on an on.  The cost is staggerring.  I think everyone can understand that the word "thanks" means a whole lot more to us now. 

My intent in not to minimize the human element of what health care is trying to do...but the harsh reality is that none of it can happen with out the dollars to support it.  The biggest challenge of the next 20 years is to figure out how to pay for it.  In many ways I think we will not have a lot of choice about what direction health care takes, despite what political party is in office, as it will largely be dictated by how much we can affrod to spend.  Harsh...but true.

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