New Green Alliance Health System Perspectives

Ben Webster, Leader of the NGA, replies to questions from Saskatchewan Health Coalition

Note:  in 2005 the name of the Party became  The Green Party of Saskatchewan


Dale Holmberg
President, Saskatchewan Health Coalition
455 2nd Avenue North
Saskatoon, SK.
S7K 2C2

Dear Mr. Holmberg:

Thank you for the opportunity during this provincial election to address the Saskatchewan Health Coalition on the topic of the quality of, and accessibility to, the health support system in Saskatchewan.

The membership of the New Green Alliance believes in nine basic principles which guide our values and policy in areas critical to human and ecological well being. These principles include Ecological Wisdom, Social and Economic Justice, Participatory Democracy, Personal Social and Global Responsibility, Community Based Economics, Cooperation and Mutual Aid, Respect for Diversity, Peace and Non-Violence, and Decentralization. The NGA applies these principles and our policy to the questions that you have raised:

1) What is your position and that of your party on retaining or altering the current structure of regionally managed health authorities and more specifically your position on elected versus appointed regional boards?

An NGA Government will create a democratic participatory process for an effective community voice in determining health policy at the local level. The current structure of regionally managed health authorities lacks the ability to have positive input and planning from the community, and the NGA would restructure the governance structure to include a boards that are 100% elected, and will stress the need for greater public input into local decisions.

2) What is your party's position within the debate of public versus private administration, funding, and delivery of health care services? Would you continue or reverse the trend to expand private for-profit health services, including so-called "public-private" partnerships?

A New Green Alliance Government would ensure adequate public funding is available to maintain the five principles of Medicare, and is opposed to the privatization of health care services. The NGA would ensure that health care services in Saskatchewan are publicly funded, publicly administered, and publicly delivered to every citizen of Saskatchewan.

3) The National Health Forum in 1997 strongly advocated the inclusion of presciption drug costs and home care in an expanded medical care insurance program at the national level. Would your party support such an expansion of medicare and what policies would you support or implement provincially to improve these two service areas?

An NGA Government will support the inclusion of pharmacare and home care in a renewed medicare program in Saskatchewan. The NGA also supports the expansion of alternative medicine and dental care. All these programs would be publicly insured.

4) Would your party support altering or phasing out the innefficient "fee-for-service" model of health care delivery and a move toward a community-linked multidisciplinary approach based on salaries for the management, administration and delivery of services?

An NGA Government will support the transition to a salaried team of health personnel, and supports the expansion of more community health centres.

The NGA would like to make an important point regarding health policy that is not addressed in this questionnaire. That is the NGA recognizes that an effective health system requires that access to healthy air, water, and food must be achieved for a healthy population. The NGA supports preventative health care that considers social, economic, and environmental factors.

Thank you once again for the opportunity for the New Green Alliance to present our vision on health care during the election. We believe that our responses will resonate well with the members of the Saskatchewan Health Coalition. For more information, please check the NGAs election website at and our main site at We look forward to future correspondance with the SHC.



Ben Webster
Leader, New Green Alliance
NGA candidate for Prince Albert Northcote