AUGUST 17TH CLINIC, 2012 – raising the risk of death and disability in Canadian infants.
Women not provided professional healthcare during their pregnancy are far more likely to experience serious negative outcomes. So is the unborn child they carry. The risk of prematurity, death to mother, and complications such as eclampsia and newborn death are up to 7 times higher when Mom and baby have no healthcare.
Again, this week, a continuing stream of women at all stages of pregnancy arrived in clinic with rejected IFH, deprived access to healthcare for their pregnancies and unborn. This included Amy, 2 months away from delivery. “Desperate”, best describes her emotions. The expiry date on her IFH papers was in the future. When we contacted Blue Cross, the newly appointed ( by the Conservative Feds) insurance carrier that oversees IFH requests and claims ( we have to stop clinic and phone for each patient) we get nothing but rejections. Amy could not afford the fee her doctor was now charging.
The obstetricians we called to help her were either full, or charged. Amy needed every cent to try to cover the delivery / hospital fees. She was in a panic. A lot of handwringing and discussion ensued. We decided the best pathway for a good outcome would be for us, with the Midwives who give us time, to provide the remainder of her antenatal care, provide her with her pregnancy medical records, and refer Amy through the local ER when she went into labour. What else can we do?
In 1998, a US analyses ( where there are 40 million uninsured) determined the cost to their society of “raising” a damaged newborn, in the NYC area, delivered with prematurity complications from an unattended pregnancy, exceeded $500,000 by age 20. The cost of healthcare for the same pregnancy and delivery, including 24 hours in hospital was $6000.
Do the math. Frankly, we expect better from those who govern us. Irrational, harmful, and very expensive decisions, all based on biased ideology have no place in the Legislatures of a modern democracy built on fairness and compassion.
The Federal Conservatives have repeatedly told us their new hardline refugee policies will save us all money. Really? Pray tell.