Saturday, March 26, 2005


The neoconazi Liberal Party govt. of Quebec has just announced that it will be building a $1.1 billion Francophone super-hospital in Montreal. It also intends to spend a further one billion dollars on the proposed Anglophone McGill superhospital. Polls show that the people do not want mega hospitals. Doctors, trade unions, Medicins sans frontieres are all opposed. These projects result from bureaucratic empire-building, and are not derived from any real need.

The mega-hospitals will centralize the power of the health care bureaucracy even more than it already is. And as someone who works in health care, I can tell you that they have enough trouble running the system now. (These bureaucrats would have trouble managing a hot dog stand.) Further centralization will only magnify their incompetence, with possible disastrous results for the patients.

This, by the way, is the same govt. which cut $100 million from student bursaries and seeks to destroy the living standards of thousands of support staff by corporatization of services. I have a saying about this behavior. "When it's something WE want, there is never enough money available. When it's something THEY want, the sky is the limit."

Ironically, hospitals would be an ideal place for introducing worker-self management. They are not owned by a corporation, and supposedly belong to the community. They have a highly educated staff. A council composed of nurses, doctors, technical, trade and support staff, elected by mass meetings of the groups concerned would be the best form of management. For sure such a group would not come up with a crack pot idea like a mega hospital!


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