CMA President Dr. Granger Avery and the CMA’s Chief Policy Advisor, Owen Adams, appeared before the Senate Standing Committee on National Finance on March 1 for their study on the financial implications and regional considerations of Canada’s aging population.
The CMA was one of the first organizations asked to appear before the committee, and Dr. Avery presented the CMA’s recommendations for a national seniors strategy, much to the Senators’ interest. Dr. Avery suggested that national standards for seniors care could force change and he further emphasized the need for collaborative approaches to health care reform.
There was great interest in the discussion with the Senators, who had many questions for Dr. Avery and the other panelists, including how much a nationwide seniors strategy would cost the health care system. Dr. Avery explained that often times, seniors needlessly stay in hospital beds, which are not only expensive but put them at risk of germs and illnesses from other patients. If more long-term care beds were made available, however, they could receive more appropriate care at a fraction of the cost.
Overall, the committee appearance was a positive opportunity for the CMA to advocate for better seniors care.