LISTEN IN: Gretzky Urges Wynne Government To Pass "Dan's Law" Before Election
Windsor West NDP MPP Lisa Gretzky wants the Wynne government to pass her private member's bill before the election begins.
Gretzky created and introduced what's known as "Dan's Law" to prevent other families from suffering as did Dan Duma's.
He was a Windsor resident who had to move to Alberta for work, but when he received a terminal diagnosis wanted to move back home.
What he found was that the Ontario health plan has a three month wait for non-urgent care coverage such as palliative care.
Gretzky introduced the bill in 2016, and had to re-introduce it again after it died when the legislature was prorogued.
She says there's enough time to get the law passed before the election campaign begins.
"The government still has time, Kathleen Wynne still has time before the election in order to pass the legislation and ensure that nobody else falls through the same gaps and faces the same barriers that Dan and his family did"
She says the Wynne government has changed regulations to waive the wait period, but that can be rolled back.
Dr. Darren Cargill at Hospice cared for Dan Duma and supports the law to remove the waiting period permanently.
Hospice of Windsor palliative care physician Dr. Darren Cargill, Hospice of Windsor, May 4, 2018 (by AM800's Peter Langille)
"it's about taking care of people with a life threatening illness with the best possible quality of life we can. The earlier we can provide that the better. And that's why this was in many ways such a tragedy because we wanted to provide good care to Dan and we just simply didn't have all the tools available to us"
Gretzky says it's difficult to come up with exact statistics, but she estimated 650 people a year face this situation.