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Patient safety at risk with privatized clinic model

THUNDER BAY – The 4,600 patients in Ottawa advised to get tested for hepatitis B, hepatitis C and HIV bear testimony to the importance of public ownership and accountability in ensuring patient safety.

“A privatized model of health care is risky for all of us; it risks patient safety and reinforces a precarious, low-wage employment, model for health care workers,” said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President. “The private for profit system fails to prioritize patient care, it puts patient safety at risk and reinforces a precarious, low-wage employment model for health care workers.”

Like the Main Street Family Medical Centre, a clinic in Ottawa, the Port Arthur Health Centre in Thunder Bay is a privately owned entity. It is here that 65 striking workers have been on strike since April 9, 2018. Meanwhile, in another strike in Ontario, 30 OPSEU workers at the Owen Sound Health Clinic are on the picket line, also protesting the low wages and unstable working conditions that a profit-driven framework supports.

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