With the legalization of marijuana fast approaching (The Government of Canada is now saying “sometime this summer”), it was only a matter of time until one of my patients asked this question: “Dr. Beck, how much marijuana will I be able to use and still drive?” “I didn’t think you were driving yet.” “I’m not …

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For the past nine months, I have been visiting my sister who is dying in Nova Scotia. This experience has truly sensitized me to the needs of those who need palliative care, and I now appreciate how much I will want to be able to control how and where my life ends. But this is …

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In recent months, I have come to learn more and more about the difficulties indigenous youth have in obtaining mental health services. In part, this is because local, provincial and federal news reports are calling attention to these difficulties but I am also very much aware of the needs of these young people in my …

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In January, I wrote a brief introductory essay on the reasons I feel patients must be included as full partners in health care, having not just the right to good care, but also responsibility for certain facets of the health care system.  There were so many comments and concerns raised by that introduction that I …

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I am puzzled by Canadian federal and provincial governments’ collective reluctance to make patients partners in their own healthcare by expecting them to accept certain responsibilities for their own health and for the sustainability of the healthcare system. Why does it seem unreasonable to governments to ask citizens to meet a minimal set of expectations …

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I am getting pretty fed up with Health Ministers. Ontario’s Minister of Health and Long Term Care, Eric Hoskins, dumped a “deal” on the table for Ontario doctors at 8 a.m. last Wednesday morning. He was in a press conference by 9 a.m. letting the public know that he had offered Ontario doctors more money …

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Here is my last question about Bill 41 before it goes to Committee: Once Minister Hoskins finishes bringing family doctors “into line”, what has he got planned for specialists? One might get the impression from the government’s reasons for introducing Bill 41 that family doctors are sitting around their offices eating bonbons all day but, …

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Minister Eric Hoskins’ Bill 41 continues to be confounding for many physicians, but possibly the most consistent question I am hearing is: Why do we need another layer of bureaucracy? How will sub-LHINs improve the system? One very intriguing twitter answer that I received suggested that this extra bureaucratic layer will serve as “administrative infrastructure” …

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