Letters to the Editor, Nov. 8, 2022


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WAGES AND EDUCATION

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As a current Grade 12 student in Ontario, I think people have a lot of opinions on how we should react to the CUPE strike. I, for one, say we do nothing. The worry people are telling me to feel right now would only be temporary, which is nothing compared to what CUPE workers have been feeling for the last few years. Strikes are not new, and three years ago I learned that I would rather stay online than walk through filthy hallways. Yes, education is important, but so is a livable wage.

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Jaseena Hossain Ajax

(We hope you get back to a clean and safe school immediately)

CHART A STRATEGY

Canada remains one of a few developed countries without a rare disease strategy. In 2019, the federal government proposed to invest up to $1 billion over two years, with up to $500 million per year ongoing. They committed to working to establish a National Strategy for Drugs for Rare Diseases. This comes as welcome news for rare disease patients, who on average wait six to eight years before receiving a correct diagnosis. Their journey is an arduous one, often fraught with endless visits to doctors, specialists and emergency rooms, and can include misdiagnosis, unnecessary surgeries and treatments. All of this puts a strain on patients and adds costs to our health systems. We need the necessary infrastructure to support our health-care professionals to improve their ability to diagnose and treat Canadians with rare diseases. That is why Canada needs a holistic National Strategy for Drugs for Rare Diseases. One that must also address improved screening, timely diagnosis, data collection, and patient and caregiver support. Creating an impactful strategy is a shared responsibility that requires open, thoughtful discussion from the rare disease community – including patients, health-care professionals, industry – and the federal, provincial and territorial governments. To support this work, Takeda published Strategies for Rare Diseases: International Landscape Report. As the health ministers discuss changes to our health-care system, I encourage them to discuss how a holistic strategy would have a meaningful impact on rare disease patients and their families. We owe it to them to get it right and to make the strategy an urgent priority.

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Rute Fernandes General Manager, Takeda Canada Inc.

(Based on how we reacted to the pandemic, it should come as no surprise there is no strategy on rare diseases. But we share your sentiment and encourage them to take a look at the work you have done)

BIG ISSUES

I can’t understand why people in Canada are out protesting for things that are happening in other countries for which we have no control over. But, people will not protest over the cost of living here and our rights being restricted in Canada. I guess they like the high prices here and the high taxes.

D. Lammi Oakville

(Millions of Canadians have come from countries around the world, and there is always a connection to their homeland, that’s why they protest)

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