Our Commentaries

Our Commentaries

Our expert advisors have written opinion pieces and health articles on important health policy topics, published in leading media outlets across the country. We are making these commentaries and articles available to everyone, free of charge, with a Creative Commons license, so that you may use them in your publication or on your website. See also our Commentaries in French. Download our free eBooks — a compendium of our commentaries: Navigating the Evidence: Communicating Canadian Health Policy in the Media, Making Evidence Matter in Canadian Health Policy, and Canadian Health Policy in the News: Why Evidence Matters.

Evidence is important to us, and we are committed to getting the evidence right — even when it can be interpreted in a number of ways. If you feel we have not represented the evidence accurately or fairly in these opinion pieces, please let us know. Browse our Commentaries by category, below, or view them all here.

AGING POPULATION AND
ITS POTENTIAL IMPACT
HEALTHCARE COSTS AND SPENDING
  • word autism written in a chalkboard
    Four things everyone should know about autism in Canada
    By Kathleen O’Grady

    Canadian governments have done little to address the crisis faced by autism families across the country. This sentiment was true in 2007 when it was put forward in the cross-party Senate report on the state of funding for the treatment of autism in Canada, aptly titled, Pay Now or Pay Later. And until recently, this sentiment could be used to sum up the role of the federal government which has largely left the crisis up to provincial ministries to manage.

  • The question mark of the medications. Blue medications. 3D.
    Is waiting longer for new prescription drug approvals necessarily a bad thing?
    By Alan Cassels

    The newest report from Canada’s brand name drug makers on access to new drugs has one key message: compared to other countries, Canada goes slow and low. New drugs are slower to be covered by our provincial drug plans and the numbers of people who get access to new drugs are lower than in other countries. The report is undeniably negative: Canadians are suffering because our governments don’t provide timely access to new medicines.

PRIVATE, FOR-PROFIT SOLUTIONS
TO FUNDING AND DELIVERY
HEALTH IS MORE THAN HEALTHCARE
  • word autism written in a chalkboard
    Four things everyone should know about autism in Canada
    By Kathleen O’Grady

    Canadian governments have done little to address the crisis faced by autism families across the country. This sentiment was true in 2007 when it was put forward in the cross-party Senate report on the state of funding for the treatment of autism in Canada, aptly titled, Pay Now or Pay Later. And until recently, this sentiment could be used to sum up the role of the federal government which has largely left the crisis up to provincial ministries to manage.

  • It shouldn’t matter where you go to school, but for kids with diabetes, it does
    It shouldn’t matter where you go to school, but for kids with diabetes, it does
    By Jan Hux

    Summer is a time to put thoughts of school aside, but some families are already worrying about September. For parents of kids with diabetes, the beginning of each new school year brings not only the usual preparations, but also fears for their child’s health and safety.

PATIENT FINANCING OF HEALTHCARE
(THE PATIENT PAYS)
MORE CARE IS NOT ALWAYS BETTER
  • BC election represents crossroads for the future of medicine in Canada
    BC doctors' election represents crossroads for the future of medicine in Canada
    By Vanessa Brcic and Ryan Meili

    Normally provincial medical association elections are not national news. The one vote difference between first and second place in the race for president of the Doctors of BC ­– later declared a tie after a recount – might be enough to grab people’s attention.

  • It’s time to include dental health in the healthcare system
    It’s time to include dental health in the healthcare system
    By Paul Allison

    There are many reasons why some Canadians choose not to go to the dentist, but a new report released this week from the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences (CAHS) found that cost is a major factor — and that Canada’s most vulnerable populations have the highest rates of dental decay, pain and disease, but the worst access to this much needed healthcare service.

  • Antibiotics – overprescribed and under-effectiv
    Antibiotics — overprescribed and under-effective
    By Brian Rotenberg

    I am privileged to help patients deal with a variety of common disorders such as ear infections, pharyngitis and sinus inflammation. People suffer a great deal from these problems, especially when they are in the acute phase.

  • FRANK_Are we medicalizing health people?
    Are we medicalizing healthy people?
    By John Frank

    Modern medical practice is engaged in a battle, not for hearts and minds, but for the conversion of perfectly healthy people into patients, labelled “at high risk” of various diseases in the name of prevention.

SUSTAINABILITY WAITING FOR CARE
  • The inconsistencies of Canadian healthcare.
    The inconsistencies of Canadian healthcare
    By Robert Brown

    I spent my life teaching actuarial science at a university. As a result, I calculated lots of numbers: averages, expected values, variances. But, they were only numbers. What I didn’t see was the individual human story behind each calculation.

  • Is it fair to make a public appeal for a live organ donor
    Is it fair to make a public appeal for a live organ donor?
    By Jennifer Chandler

    The public response to the appeal on behalf of Eugene Melnyk, owner of the Ottawa Senators hockey team, for a liver donor has been a heart-warming demonstration of the generosity of our community. Fortunately, a donor was found and the transplant was performed in time to save his life.

PHARMACEUTICAL POLICY MENTAL HEALTH
  • The question mark of the medications. Blue medications. 3D.
    Is waiting longer for new prescription drug approvals necessarily a bad thing?
    By Alan Cassels

    The newest report from Canada’s brand name drug makers on access to new drugs has one key message: compared to other countries, Canada goes slow and low. New drugs are slower to be covered by our provincial drug plans and the numbers of people who get access to new drugs are lower than in other countries. The report is undeniably negative: Canadians are suffering because our governments don’t provide timely access to new medicines.

  • Antibiotics – overprescribed and under-effectiv
    Antibiotics — overprescribed and under-effective
    By Brian Rotenberg

    I am privileged to help patients deal with a variety of common disorders such as ear infections, pharyngitis and sinus inflammation. People suffer a great deal from these problems, especially when they are in the acute phase.

OBESITY INTERNATIONAL HEALTH SYSTEMS
  • QUEENAN_Why this U.S. doctor is moving to Canada
    Why this U.S. doctor is moving to Canada
    By Emily Queenan

    I’m a U.S. family physician who has decided to relocate to Canada. The hassles of working in the dysfunctional health care “system” in the U.S. have simply become too intense.

  • Why Canadian hospitals outperform U.S. hospitals
    Why Canadian hospitals outperform U.S. hospitals
    By Steffie Woolhandler and David Himmelstein

    In many countries, bereaved families get condolence cards and flowers. In the U.S., the survivors are also deluged with hospital bills and insurance paperwork. That paperwork isn’t merely an insult. It costs U.S. society a fortune.

Browse All Commentaries View French Commentaries

License to Republish: Our commentaries are provided under the terms of a CreativeCommons Attribution No-Derivatives license. This license allows for free redistribution, commercial and non-commercial, as long as it is passed along unchanged and in whole, with credit to the author and EvidenceNetwork.ca


EvidenceNetwork.ca supports the use of evidence when reporting on health and health policy in the mainstream media. Specific points of view represented here are the author’s and not those of EvidenceNetwork.ca. Let us know how we’re doing: evidencenetwork@gmail.com

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