Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Farber On Healthcare, Redux

Back a week or so, CJC head and provincial Liberal Party candidate for Thornhill Bernie Farber penned a column for Shalom Life in which he was critical of Ontario's health-care system circa the Mike Harris Gov.  He used as an example the treatment his sister-in-law received when dealing with breast cancer back in 2001.  This triggered a response in the article's comments section by a fellow named Michael Robitaille--none other than the woman's husband--who essentially accused Bernie of exploiting her illness and eventual death for political gain.  And that was followed by an Op-Ed piece by the T.O. Sun's Christina Blizzard which echoed Robitaille's complaints. 

In the latest installment of this back and forth, today's Sun letters section brings us a response to Blizzard's column that defends Mr. Farber:

Re “Farber fables?” (July 24): Christina Blizzard comments on Bernie Farber’s recent piece in Shalom Life where he referenced the sad passing of his sister-in-law, Joanne. Blizzard reports Joanne’s widower took issue with Bernie’s view on Joanne’s care during her illness. I knew Joanne during this time — she was a colleague and a friend. Without going into details, let me be clear it was Joanne’s parents, sister’s family and friends who cared for her during the last nine months of her life. Her parents left their home in Ottawa to care for Joanne. The health care she received was outstanding, there is really no disagreement on this point. But it was not integrated — different elements were provided at different hospitals by different teams, and little was available by way of home care. We wished there were more services for Joanne to ease her pain and make her journey smoother. Let’s get back to the real debate — the state of health care in Ontario.

Brenda Spiegler


Anonymous said...

Thank you for this BCL. I would have missed this letter entirely and it certainly more than supports Mr.Farber's version of events. And coming from a friend of Mr. Farber's sister in-law makes it very credible. Its pretty clear to me that if it was Joanne's family that took care of her as Brenda Speigler writes they would know exactly what they went through during this time.

When I try to understand why the former brother in-law would do this it only tells me that he has an issue with the family.

alfdamalf said...

Cristina Blizzerd suggested that Bernie Farber wasn't telling the truth and the letter here really fixes that.

Ms. Spiegler and Mr. Farber explained the lack of services to people dealing with cancer during the Harris years all too well.

I went through the same experience with a family member moving from hospital to hospital and being unable to secure regular home nursing. Today I thank god that things have changed so much for the better.Thank you Mr. Farber for telling your personal story.

Meir Weinstein said...

“they’re not my cup of tea”