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Results: 1 - 15 of 274
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
2023-02-07 14:29 [p.11368]
Mr. Speaker, our health system is experiencing significant challenges, and it is important that we work together to find the best solutions going forward. That is why, today, the Prime Minister and the Minister of Health are sitting down with the premiers and the ministers of health from across this country.
Our government remains ready to work with provinces and territories to further discuss priorities, actions and results to improve the health services that Canadians rely on. That includes reducing backlogs and supporting our health care workers, enhancing access to family health services, improving mental health and substance use services, helping Canadians age with dignity closer to home, and using health data and digital health more effectively.
We will always be there to support our universal public health care system.
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
2023-02-07 14:30 [p.11368]
Mr. Speaker, perhaps my colleague did not hear me when I said that we will always stand up for our fundamental public universal health care. I will say it again: We will always stand up for our public universal health care.
Our government remains ready to work with the provinces and territories to further discuss priorities, actions and results to improve health services for all Canadians. That includes reducing backlogs, supporting our health care workers, enhancing access to family health services, improving mental health and substance use services, and the list goes on.
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
2023-02-06 19:07 [p.11326]
Madam Speaker, I appreciate the opportunity to come here to night to talk about some of the measures the government took earlier in the COVID-19 pandemic to protect the health and safety of Canadians. My friend and colleague opposite is doing her job well, and I appreciate that. I want to thank her for doing her job well. She knows that I do not work in HR, so I cannot comment on any specifics in regard to people's employment, but I can speak to some of the measures we took throughout the pandemic to keep Canadians healthy.
Our government consistently worked to protect Canadians by adapting our response to COVID-19 based on the latest science and evidence.
In fact, experts say that without our public health measures and vaccines, 30.7 million more Canadians would have contracted the virus, 1.85 million of those people would have been hospitalized and 700,000 would have died.
These are some numbers that are truly troubling. Gratefully, we did not get to the worst-case scenario.
The Public Health Agency of Canada had arrangements with hotels as part of their designation as quarantine facilities under the Quarantine Act, and these facilities were there as an important measure to stop the spread and to save lives. At present day, there are no designated quarantine facilities in operation in Canada. These facilities were part of our overall efforts to reduce and manage risk.
The various waves were very unpredictable. Nobody knew when they were coming. Over 22,000 travellers were admitted to designated quarantine facilities between March 22, 2020, and September 30, 2022. The costs associated with the program were not just for the rooms. There was lodging, meals, security, transportation and all sorts of public health measures. Several other countries that had quarantine hotels for travellers, such as New Zealand and Hong Kong, as well as Australia, some of those continued their programs well into 2022.
Our government has always worked to protect Canadians. We have adapted our COVID-19 response based on the latest science and evidence. Designated quarantine facilities met public health guidelines for the purposes of accommodating travellers to quarantine as required by emergency orders under the Quarantine Act.
It was a huge challenge for everybody in Canada and around the world over those couple of years, but we did our best to stand up for Canadians and make sure that there was a safe place for them to go when they got back home after a trip.
Once again, I want to thank my friend and colleague for doing her work, and for her diligence. I would be glad to take a rebuttal.
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
2023-02-06 19:11 [p.11326]
Madam Speaker, I have to say I appreciate my colleague's work, and I have appreciated her work over the last couple of years. She has been a really unique voice of reason from the other side. There have been some times when we have really had to shake our heads and say, “My gosh, what are people reading on the Internet?”
Just recently, the former leader of the Conservative Party did an interview. With respect to his caucus, he described that a bunch of them were spending a lot of time on the Internet. He said, “There was a section that went right down the rabbit hole of COVID—Ivermectin, the whole nine yards.”
I am glad that group does not include my friend from Calgary Nose Hill. She has been an extraordinarily rational and cogent voice in the House throughout the pandemic, and I thank her for her work in holding the government to account.
Our government remains committed to evolving our public health response as situations change, and as public health demands change, we will adapt to the needs of Canadians and apply appropriate measures at the border and monitor compliance with public health measures to prevent infection and to ensure that we continue to be a safe country for—
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
2023-02-03 11:06 [p.11227]
Madam Speaker, over the last year, the conservation authority in my riding, Conservation Halton, has planted close to 80,000 trees. It has restored stream habitat; managed 11,000 acres of land; hired over 800 young people to work in nature; maintained 116 kilometres of trails; and monitored aquatic and terrestrial habitat, as well as water quality, at 325 monitoring stations.
It has carried out 45 major environmental restoration projects and also protects Crawford Lake, which has rich indigenous history and one of the coolest meromictic lakes in the world. The over 1.3 million visitors to its eight parks last year spent three million hours in nature and walked over six million kilometres on its trails. It also taught more people ever to ski and camp, including programs for new Canadians. It donated over 400 annual park passes to local libraries, so anyone can borrow a pass and access its parks for free, and it also held its third annual Pride in Nature event to show solidarity with LGBTQ2+ community members, and so much more.
Despite all that, conservation authorities in our greenbelt are being threatened by the notion that we just cannot build homes without destroying nature. I reject that notion. The integrity of our greenbelt must be protected. Green spaces are our greatest asset, and I am proud to recommit myself to being a strong and effective voice for conservation and the greenbelt in Milton and across Canada.
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
2023-02-03 11:28 [p.11231]
Madam Speaker, we share the deep concerns that Canadians have regarding the significant challenges that our health care system is experiencing, and we recognize that urgent actions are necessary to address the current health care worker crisis. In fact, in the health committee, we have just finished our study on the human resources challenge in health care.
We are continuing to work with the provinces and territories to deliver real results for people through better access to family health teams, including more doctors and more nurses where there are not enough; better access to digital health information; better mental health care; and help to age with dignity. These are things Canadians need. We will always be here to support and stand up for our public universal health care system.
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
2023-02-03 12:00 [p.11237]
Madam Speaker, I would like to thank my colleague for her question and her support on a very important issue that our government is very involved in.
We are creating new structures to protect athletes and provide solutions to help and support them. A few months ago, we established the Office of the Sport Integrity Commissioner, and 34 sporting federations joined it. We are doing everything we can to protect athletes, and we will always stand by them.
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
2023-02-02 15:09 [p.11186]
Mr. Speaker, let me be clear: Canadians are proud of our system, and this government is too. It is based on need and not the ability to pay, and we believe that all one should need in order to get health care is a health card, not a credit card.
We will make sure that our investments respect the Canada Health Act while always defending our universal public health care system.
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
2023-01-31 10:45 [p.11013]
Mr. Speaker, it is great to be back and I welcome all my colleagues back to the House of Commons.
Over the course of the break, I had lots of time to knock on doors. I talked to lots of my neighbours. Milton is one of the youngest communities in Canada demographically, so I overwhelmingly heard from my constituents that they were thrilled about the amount of money they were saving every month on child care.
While the Conservatives ran on a promise to tear up those agreements and remove national child care from my community, it would be devastating for my community. They have been talking a lot about affordability, but the $450, $500 or $600 a month that my constituents are saving on child care fees is really supporting them.
What is the Conservative plan to support families and their young children in those early years?
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
2022-12-13 18:47 [p.10862]
Madam Speaker, the member can rest assured that there are no cover-ups, as he has repeatedly implied in this House. At a time when democracy is being challenged around the world, Canada's electoral system remains healthy and robust. Canada continues to rank among the world's healthiest democracies, something that we can all be proud of in the House and across the country.
Members of the procedure and House affairs committee, of which the member opposite is a member, heard from the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs earlier today, who confirmed that Canada's democracy is strong, but that does not mean there are no attempts being made to interfere in our elections. Working diligently to preserve the integrity of our elections is essential to maintaining the legitimacy, credibility and reliability of Canada's democratic processes, and interference in Canada's elections is absolutely never acceptable.
In anticipation of the 2019 election, at a time when we were witnessing increasing efforts by malicious foreign actors to undermine democracies around the world, the Government of Canada did not sit on its laurels. Rather, it rose to the challenge and took preventative action to safeguard our democratic institutions and processes. The result of such efforts took the form of the plan to protect Canada's democracy.
While this plan certainly contributes to the strength and health of our democratic institutions, we know we cannot afford to be complacent. We are aware that malicious foreign actors are consistently evolving their tactics over time as they adapt to emerging opportunities and new tools. That is why we continue to adapt our tools and approaches to ensure that our institutions are resilient to any potential threats of foreign interference.
As the Prime Minister and various ministers have repeated, the government put in place an independent process of experts, chaired by the Clerk of the Privy Council. That is something the previous government never thought important enough to do. Of course, this work needs to remain independent. That is obvious to most. It is incumbent upon all of us to recognize how important it is, given that we all have partisan interests, the member opposite and me included, that this work remain in the hands of independent people.
That group of experts is chaired by the Clerk of the Privy Council and includes the heads of Canada's security and intelligence agencies. They were given the important responsibility of ensuring that Canadian elections continue to be free and democratic. The good news, which I know will not excite the member opposite, is that experts confirmed that both elections were exactly that, free and democratic.
It is important to remember what we heard from witnesses at committee, including from Canada's Chief Electoral Officer and CSIS officials. They commented on the fact that attempts to influence democratic elections do not equate to causing actual influence, nor are they a new phenomenon in Canada or around the world. The work done by committees like NSICOP, CSIS and the national security experts strengthens the democratic process and Canada's elections, and the Conservatives are undermining this important work rather than offering a more productive contribution to the discussion of security throughout our electoral processes.
To be clear, Canada's elections are free and fair. The non-partisan national security experts who oversee these threats to our elections are confident in the results of these elections, and I would like to repeat the fact that it is in the hands of non-partisan experts, not in the hands of people with partisan interests, like the people who are elected to this House.
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
2022-12-13 18:51 [p.10863]
Madam Speaker, Canadians continue to have and should have confidence in our electoral processes.
As I mentioned before, Canada's electoral system is strong. Improving, strengthening and protecting our democratic institutions against all forms of foreign interference remains our government's top priority. We have implemented a series of measures, such as the plan to protect Canada's democracy, that strengthen our response and ensure that we are equipped with the tools and mechanisms to combat electoral interference.
Our democracy remains robust, and our electoral systems are healthy. We know that malicious actors are becoming more creative at using online platforms to manipulate options, and we will continue to invest in and adapt our strategies to effectively increase transparency, authenticity and integrity in our systems. It is important, now more than ever, because the previous Conservative government did not consider it a priority.
We will also ensure that Canadians are protected from foreign interference and that our elections remain some of the most fair and free in the world, something we can all be proud of.
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
2022-12-13 18:56 [p.10863]
Madam Speaker, before I start, I feel compelled to say a few words with respect to the passing of our friend and colleague Jim Carr, the member for Winnipeg South Centre.
I was one of the members who got to sit behind the member for Winnipeg South Centre during his last speech in the House of Commons, when he spoke so eloquently about his bill to ensure the Prairies have a green economy on the horizon. It was a beautiful speech and he had a lot of emotion. It was tough to see him suffer over the last couple of years, but I know that his legacy in this place and in Winnipeg is extremely strong.
I just want to send condolences to his family, his staff, his friends, his entire riding and indeed every Canadian whom he touched with his intelligence, wisdom, compassion and legislation in this place. He will be missed.
I am grateful for the opportunity I have this evening to discuss this very important issue for Canadians. I also want to thank my friend, the hon. member, for drawing our attention to this very important subject.
We know that many hospitals in the country are experiencing extremely long wait times and they are way above capacity. Health force vacancies have almost doubled in the past two years and they have continued to climb. This is especially true of Canada's nursing workforce, where the vacancy rates reached a record high of 136,800 in the first quarter of 2022. That is up 5% from the peak in the fourth quarter of 2021. Health care workers are overworked and they do not feel supported, which has many quitting and is also likely preventing a lot of new talent from choosing that as their future career.
Our government is focusing on sustainably increasing the supply of health care workers and helping to create healthier workplaces to support the retention and mental health of health care workers. That is why budget 2022 announced $115 million over five years with $30 million ongoing to expand the foreign credential recognition program and help up to 11,000 internationally trained health care professionals per year get their credentials recognized so they will be able to work in the fields in which they are educated.
While we work on recruitment and retention of health care workers, we will also be working on improving other areas of health care to alleviate the burden in hospitals. We know that family health services are the backbone of high-performing health care systems and that some across the country are doing better than others, so ensuring the best practices are known across the country is one big part of that.
Difficulties in accessing timely family health services impacts the use of hospital services. A lot of people choose to go or are forced to go to the emergency room when there should be better services in place from a primary care perspective. For instance, in 2020, 38% of Canadians reported their last emergency department visit was for a primary care treatable condition. As a priority, we are working to improve family health care so that Canadians do not end up in the emergency room when they could have an appointment with their family doctor.
While more funding is needed, we also need to spend smarter. Canada spends more of its GDP on health care than the OECD average. We can tackle inefficiencies in the system and use innovative approaches and tools to both improve health outcomes for Canadians and also improve cost-effectiveness, because Canadians demand that of us as well.
The member opposite referenced a number that has been used a couple times by other parties. I suggest he have a conversation with his colleague from Vancouver Kingsway. We work very well together on the health committee. That number, 22% of currently allocated costs from the federal government is not correct. It is more than that. The Canada Health Act indicates that the federal government should be paying for 50% of hospital and doctor costs, and that is very close to true.
Still, health care is about more than just hospitals and doctors in 2022, so our government will continue working with provinces and territories in the coming months to tackle this crisis and to build on the investments we have made, which have been vast, to improve health care for Canadians.
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
2022-12-13 19:01 [p.10864]
Madam Speaker, I strongly disagree that we are not willing to invest incrementally into the health care system, as evidenced by the past couple of years and all of the incremental funding we have dedicated to health care and preserving our robust health care system.
The health care money we send to provinces and territories ought to be spent on health care, but in provinces like mine, Ontario, a lot of that money is going to refunds for their licence plate stickers. Some of it is being used to balance the budget and create a surplus. Ontario's government is operating at a surplus right now, saying there is an emergency in the health care system.
During times of an emergency, a serious government does not run a surplus. It invests in its population, and that is what we would like to see across the country. We would like to see priorities. We have priorities around data, around human resources and health care, and around long-term care, as my colleague referenced. We have priorities to remove the backlog in the health care system and to ensure people are getting the primary care they need. We will spend money on that, not balancing the books.
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
2022-12-06 14:29 [p.10497]
Mr. Speaker, I agree with the hon. member. Urgent actions are indeed required to address the current health workforce crisis. That is why we have taken significant steps forward by establishing a coalition for action for health care workers to inform immediate and long-term solutions to address these challenges, by introducing measures to facilitate the entry of foreign national physicians and permanent residents, and by announcing a national nursing officer to provide strategic advice from a nursing perspective.
Our government's priority remains working together for better outcomes for Canadians, and that includes the youngest patients in our hospitals. I appreciate the attention to this very important matter.
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam van Koeverden Profile
2022-12-06 14:39 [p.10499]
Mr. Speaker, I thank my hon. colleague for his question.
Our health care system is facing major challenges, and we must work together to improve health care for Canadians. We are disappointed in the outcome of the meeting and in the provincial and territorial premiers' statement.
Nevertheless, our government remains ready to work with the provinces and territories and to continue discussing priorities.
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