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Expanding Canadian Healthcare in the USA: A New Frontier for Arizona

The Co-Chairs of the Canada-Surprise, Arizona Cross-Border Healthcare Task Force hosted a panel presentation and discussion on the topic of Expanding Canadian Healthcare in the USA: A New Frontier in Arizona


By Casey Kuhn
Senior Field Correspondent
91.5 KJZZ

They say the leaves don’t change here — but the license plates do. ‘Tis the season for snowbirds traveling south to Arizona. One city is looking to bring health care that is targeted especially for those coming from our northern border neighbor.

Canadian health care leaders are in the Valley this week with Surprise officials discussing how to bring Canadian medical services to the area.

Jeanine Jerkovic is Surprise’s economic development director and helped spearhead the program.

“When you’re a city called Surprise, you know you have to be interesting,” Jerkovic said. “We like to welcome new people, we like to pilot new things, we’re a very young community.”

The idea is to set up a place in Surprise where Canadian doctors can practice and the snowbirds can get medical services and rehabilitation in a warm place.

Marc Kealey is a Canadian advocate of health reform and says the wait times in Canada for orthopedic surgery are long.

“This is a valve release,” Kealey said. “If we looked at this and said right now the wait times in Canada for hips and knees are anywhere from twelve to eighteen months. That’s unconscionable.”

There are about 20,000 Canadian-owned housing units in the Valley, and many are being occupied now as winter arrives and snowbirds migrate.

Canadian lawyer Chris MacLeod said it’s a good opportunity.

“The genius of what Surprise has done is create or at least capture a real opportunity that exists to deliver Canadian health care to Canadians in a climate and community that is welcoming and endearing,” said MacLeod.

A feasibility study is still being conducted to figure out the cost of bringing Canadian doctors to Surprise.

Original article: KJZZ.org

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image © Jacob Stanek

By Richard Smith
Independent Newsmedia

Canadians already flock to the Valley of the Sun — and the Northwest Valley in particular — in droves every winter.

Arizona is home to more than 350 Canadian companies and more than 1.1 million Canadians visit our state annually, according to the Canada Arizona Business Council. While many are here on vacation, some Canadians could get work done if an ambitious venture from Surprise and a Canadian healtchcare leader comes to fruition.

“There are so many Canadians that visit and invest in the market,” said Surprise Economic Development Director Jeanine Jerkovic, a former a trade commissioner for the Canadian Consulate in Phoenix.

During the June 20 City Council work session Ms. Jerkovic and Marc Kealey, CEO of Kealey & Associates in Toronto, presented the possibility of a new Canadian medical service center in Surprise aimed at patients who desire Canadian medical standards without the long wait times for services.

Mr. Kealey said a increasing percentage of the Canadian population is age 65 or older, and a decent amount of this aging population already spends a considerable amount of time in the United States — with Arizona a top destination.

Healthcare in Canada is publically (i.e. government) funded but privately delivered. Mr. Kealey said it is not free for consumers, a common misconception, but costs are generally manageable.

However, this model affects how often physicians can work and the availability of some types of medical procedures. For example, Mr. Kealey said, in many parts of Canada, orthopedic surgeons can only work one day a week, since it is too expensive to keep their facilities open four or five days a week.

“There are people that are in Canada who are waiting up to 18 months to get a (new) hip or knee,” Mr. Kealey said.

In the province of Ontario alone, he said, 30,000 residents are waiting for these replacements. Mr. Kealey has spent three decades in healthcare and said the wait times have been an issue at least 25 of those years.

Plus, Canada’s harsh winters wipe out a good chunk of the year for post-operation rehabilitation.

“It is really stupid to do a hip or knee (replacement) in Canada in February,” Mr. Kealey said.

Kealey & Associates is an advocacy and strategy implementation firm in Canada specializing in healthcare and drug reform.

He said a lot of people have tried to operate private clinics in upstate New York, Florida and on the West Coast.

For years, Mr. Kealey searched for a place to do something a bit different. Surprise became the choice, he said, because of its assertive nature and willingness to think outside the box.

In February, Mayor Sharon Wolcott appointed Ms. Jerkovic and Mr. Kealey as co-chairs for a cross-border taskforce to research and identify ways in which Surprise can support expanded healthcare services to Canadians who visit or reside in the area.

Councilman John Williams lived in New York before Surprise and is familiar with the Canadian health system.

“I love the concept. We’re serving the greater good. The wait times have been going on for a long time,” he said.

While the big-picture concept is sound, the rest of this year is likely to be spent seeing if details can be worked out. Roundtables are scheduled for Toronto later this summer and Surprise in the fall.

A decision should come in the winter and, if favorable, the program could start in 2018.

Surgeries are more likely in winter, early spring or late fall, followed by a rehabilitation stint here.

“One of the things we’ve landed on is the notion that there is infrastructure here already. The infrastructure here is complementary to what we want to do,” Mr. Kealey said. “As a concrete example, we know that if you can’t get a hip or knee (replacement) in Canada for 18 months and there is an option to do that here, we’ll market that to patients. We looked at things like once a patient is here, how long would they need to be here. When you look at opportunities for post-op, there’s an existing infrastructure in tele-medicine that could link from Surprise, Arizona to that patient’s physician back home, even before the surgery.”

In particular, he is talking about MD24, the Surprise-based tele-medicince company that grew from Surprise’s incubator. That kind of medical integration is exciting, Mr. Kealey said, and a hallmark of the Canadian system.

Second issue is to formalize the feasibility of providing the service here. Costs, providers and facilities would have to be consistent with those in Canada.

Mr. Kealey said the extra cost to patients — and earnings potential for Surprise — would be travel related.

Employment for local workers would come from the ancillary medical jobs, such as nurses, personal suppork workers and nurse practicioners.

“There are issues with having Canadian physicians credentialed to actually practice here. Obviously we’re looking at Canadian phisicians concentrating on Canadian patients who would be here. We’ve got to make sure the regulatory issue is handled,” Mr. Kealey said. “We’ve done the econo-metrics on this. We know our fee structure in Canada, so we want to have the fee srtucture from Canada actually imposed down here. The analogy would be almost a consular service for health care — walking into a Canadian clinic, as it were. There’s a Canadian flag flying outside, the physicians doing work are to Canadian standards and are Canadian physicians and the fee structure is the Canadian system.”

Photo credit: Jacob Stanek
Original article: YourWestValley.com

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Canadian Healthcare: Resource Crunch

Tuesday, May 16, 2017 @ 11:05 PM


The resources crunch is coming in Canadian healthcare,
and tough choices must be made.


Click the play button to listen.

 

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Tallying the Score – Impact of Canada’s New Vaping Regulations, Part 1


 
Source: RegulatorWatch.com

 
Tallying the Score – Impact of Canada’s New Vaping Regulations, Part 2


 
Source: RegulatorWatch.com

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Swearing in of New Cabinet 2015

Friday, November 6, 2015 @ 12:11 PM

A New Prime Minister and a New Executive Council

cabinet-2015

http://kealeyandassociates.com/swearing-in-of-new-cabinet-2015

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Perspective of Campaign 2015

Wednesday, October 28, 2015 @ 11:10 AM

Please click the link below to read K&A’s perspective of Campaign 2015:

   

http://kealeyandassociates.com/our-perspective-of-campaign-2015

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Water & Environmental Leadership Award

Friday, October 16, 2015 @ 04:10 PM

Canada’s 17th Prime Minister is coming to Niagara-on-the-Lake on Sept. 24 to help launch the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority’s (NPCA) inaugural Rt. Hon. John Turner Water & Environmental Leadership Award. The award will be handed out annually to an individual, group or business who has demonstrated leadership in promoting or improving water and the environment within the NPCA’s watershed.

“Our watershed – Niagara, parts of Hamilton and Haldimand – is home to some of the most beautiful nature in Canada,” said NPCA, CAO, Carmen D’Angelo. “There are many organizations and people who voluntarily help promote and enhance our local environmental treasures and we ought to recognize them for their passion and dedication.”


All net proceeds from the evening will support the work of the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority through its Foundation. “Projects such as improving water quality, adding to our tree canopy, protecting endangered species and improving our beautiful conservation areas benefit from the generous support of our donors,” said Vice-Chair and Foundation Board member Sandy Annunziata. “We are also happy to announce that part of the proceeds from tonight’s event will establish the Rt. Hon. John Turner Environmental Scholarship,” added Mr. Annunziata. The scholarship will be awarded to a student entering their second year of environmental study at Brock University with exceptional academic standing.

The highlight of the evening will be the awarding of a Canadian, handmade canoe paddle to Mr. Turner, engraved with his name and the name of the award. “This award will forever recognize the passion, dedication and commitment Mr. Turner had during his 25 year career in Canadian Parliament and continuing after his time in politics,” said NPCA Board Chair, Bruce Timms. “He has advocated for and brought a strong influential voice to our nation’s greatest treasures: our water and our land; we honour Prime Minister Turner for all he has done to raise awareness and profile of Canada’s environment and ensure that future generations of Canadians will continue to enjoy our country’s great natural treasures.”

photo gallery credit: npcadigital

- Marc Kealey
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John Turner proposed the formation of the Arctic Youth Corps

I really became a Canadian when I got to know Canada north of the 60th parallel… I have never felt more Canadian than when alone with my thoughts in the remote northern vastness.’ — Former Prime Minister John Turner

 
Roderick Benns from Ottawa Life Magazine writes:

Former Prime Minister John Turner has canoed every river in Canada that empties into the Arctic Ocean. As a young parliamentary secretary to Arthur Laing, the minister of Northern Affairs and National Resources under Lester Pearson, he came to know the northern reaches of the country intimately.

While it is the current prime minister, Stephen Harper, who now garners arctic headlines, perhaps the Liberal Party should be reviving a policy idea Turner brought forward to the Pearson government in the 1960s.

Turner accompanied Laing on a trip to the Arctic during two consecutive summers, in 1963-64, and he was deeply affected by what he saw. From Cape Dorset to Port Burwell and many other Arctic communities, Turner saw the Inuit people in a realistic—although precarious—light. They were leaving their old ways behind, but yet not sure how to embrace the opportunities of capitalism that southern Canadians simply took for granted. As his biographer, Paul Litt, has pointed out, Turner wanted the Inuit to develop their own commercial enterprises, so they could run self-sustaining businesses. He believed in encouraging southern Canadian investment in the north.

Part of what Turner saw as a disconnect between the Inuit way of life and southern Canada was the lack of opportunity for the two to ever meet. It was this lack of connection—and the fact that there was no capacity to make it happen—that weighed heavily on him when he sat down to come up with policy options for the Pearson government.

One of his most inspired ideas has been lost in history’s pages – although it was both exciting enough and practical enough for the Pearson government of the day to include it in the 1965 Speech from the Throne. Turner proposed the formation of the Arctic Youth Corps, modelled after the United States’ Peace Corps.

In the US version, the Peace Corps sends Americans abroad to work at the grassroots level, in an effort to create sustainable change in communities. Turner’s vision was to see the potential for young people from southern Canada to get to know the northern realities of their country. He knew that it was sustainability that was needed in the arctic and that such a program might go a long way in building economic and social bridges between north and south.

He also knew that young Canadians who served in the Arctic Youth Corps would carry this knowledge into subsequent generations. It would be a legacy of real value passed on from one generation to the next.

In a recent interview with Turner, it was clear he believed the Arctic Youth Corps remains a viable idea, declaring that it would “open up the eyes of our young people to our great north.”

While he gives Prime Minister Harper credit for “taking a great interest” in Canada’s arctic, he also notes that “we haven’t done as much as we should.”

Turner says transportation development, education, and a broad range of business opportunities needs to be encouraged in the far north so it can attain its potential. Showcasing what the Inuit people can do with a hand up in infrastructure matters will be important. The Arctic Youth Corps could be a crucial, bridge-building link that is also relatively cost effective, compared to many other arctic initiatives.

Like many who have visited the Canadian arctic, Turner was never able to free himself from its pull. His personal interest remained, even when he moved into other political portfolios. Given Liberal leader Justin Trudeau’s teaching background and his interest in Canadian youth, he could do worse than to revive a celebrated – albeit forgotten—policy idea from the most senior Liberal statesman in Canada.

Click here for the original article.
 

- Marc Kealey
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Walking in the steps of St. Paul

Tuesday, November 25, 2014 @ 12:11 PM

I have always believed that God channels His most treasured Saints through the least obvious of people on earth. Religious scholars teach us that St. Paul is one of the more important Saints in our faith. He was a lecturer, a debater and unafraid of anyone or anything. It was said that St. Paul actually confronted St. Peter to his face about issues affecting the newly found faith and the responsibilities of followers of it. My good friend and cosmic brother Michael Fredric Boland died last week – he was the quintessential and contemporary version of St. Paul – a debater, often raging against injustice and smarter by half than most.

I am compelled to write about Michael because his life was so impactful – for me! Michael was the epitome of what it means to be a lawyer – always inquisitive and always prepared. He loved his Catholic faith, his friends and most of all his family. More often than not, like St. Paul, he was prepped for debate. Michael could feel and exude rage better than anyone alive and was unafraid to let you know it when any injustice presented. He was visceral.

I first met Michael when I worked for the Rt. Hon. John N. Turner. I was living in Whitby at the time and traveling weekly to my office in Ottawa. The Meech Lake Accord had been introduced in the mid 1980’s and like me; Michael believed that the Accord was right in recognizing Quebec as distinct. Many thought otherwise – he railed against that and cited constitutional precedence in his argument. We became instant friends – an enduring friendship lasting 30 years and many events – football games, weddings, baptisms and many, many meals. We shared the same birthday – an occasion we never missed calling or meeting about or around for decades.

In later years he became my lawyer and railed against the injustice of those falsely accused and targeted on the web. Ironically he was the least techno-savvy person, but was so prepared and helped to move the Canada forward with better laws to protect against cyber-attacks.

You are loved Michael and I shall always remember you.

- Marc Kealey
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