Look­ing for an­swers

Pub­lic early in­ter­ven­tion ser­vice gap dis­cus­sions grind to a halt on P.E.I.

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - FRONT PAGE - Jeff Mathe­son is a par­ent of a spe­cial needs child who has been ad­vo­cat­ing for im­proved ac­cess to early child phys­i­cal medicine in the me­dia, in the leg­is­la­ture and on so­cial me­dia. He runs Help P.E.I.. https://www.face­book.com/helppei

Jeff Mathe­son push­ing prov­ince to im­prove child phys­i­cal medicine ser­vices for Is­lan­ders like his daugh­ter, who has hemi­plegic cere­bral palsy.

On P.E.I., child phys­io­ther­apy and oc­cu­pa­tional ther­apy stops be­ing served around the age of six — even though many re­quire on­go­ing treat­ment. The political scan­dals, ‘red tape’ and gen­er­ous lay­ers of bu­reau­cracy are burn­ing through pub­lic re­sources — mak­ing it dif­fi­cult to pro­vide ther­apy.

Health P.E.I. has tar­geted spe­cial needs chil­dren as a pri­or­ity in their strate­gic plan but so far the so­lu­tion has been to in­crease the spend by roughly 0.06 per cent of the Health P.E.I. Bud­get.

We know P.E.I. needs more phys­io­ther­a­pists and oc­cu­pa­tional ther­a­pists. We know it’s wrong to stop pro­vid­ing re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion when chil­dren turn 6. We know P.E.I. has enough to pro­vide the ser­vices chil­dren re­quire — with­out break­ing the bank.

We also know that newly ap­pointed Health Min­is­ter Robert Hen­der­son stood with the premier, cab­i­net min­is­ters and all vot­ing MLAs to unan­i­mously sup­port our mo­tion (No. 30) in the P.E.I. Leg­isla­tive As­sem­bly to cor­rect this.

The prayers of the mo­tion are clear: (The full mo­tion is avail­able on­line.)

There­fore Be It Re­solved: that this As­sem­bly urge govern­ment to of­fi­cially re­spond as soon as pos­si­ble to the pe­ti­tion and com­mit it­self to im­prov­ing ac­cess to chil­dren1s phys­i­cal ser­vices for the ben­e­fit of Is­land chil­dren aged 0-18; (Note: There are no rules or leg­isla­tive process in place to fa­cil­i­tate tabled pub­lic pe­ti­tion re­sponses.)

There­fore Be It Fur­ther Re­solved: that this As­sem­bly en­cour­age govern­ment to com­mit to an ag­gres­sive timetable for th­ese ac­cess im­prove­ments ...

Robert Hen­der­son, alone, can end this multi­gen­er­a­tional sys­tem­atic dis­crim­i­na­tion and im­prove the mo­bil­ity and lives of P.E.I. chil­dren as stated clearly in the Pub­lic Health Act of P.E.I.

Ex­cerpt from the Pub­lic Health Act: 3. (1) The Min­is­ter shall es­tab­lish, and may amend, a pro­vin­cial health plan, which shall in­clude (c) the health ser­vices to be pro­vided or made avail­able in the prov­ince and the health fa­cil­i­ties to be op­er­ated by Health P.E.I.;

Will Robert Hen­der­son be a true leader and re­solve this is­sue or con­tinue to al­low the sys­tem to dis­crim­i­nate against chil­dren on P.E.I.?

I’d love to know.

GUARDIAN FILE PHOTO

Jeff Mathe­son is push­ing the prov­ince to im­prove child phys­i­cal medicine ser­vices for Is­lan­ders like his young daugh­ter, Vaeda, who has hemi­plegic cere­bral palsy. Father and daugh­ter are shown in this March 2014 photo

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.