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Health and pre-primary care focus of N.S. election campaign trail Wednesday

From left to right Nova Scotia's three main party leaders are Liberal Stephen McNeil, Progressive Conservative Jamie Baillie, and New Democrat Gary Burrill. Nova Scotians will elect their next government on May 30.
From left to right Nova Scotia's three main party leaders are Liberal Stephen McNeil, Progressive Conservative Jamie Baillie, and New Democrat Gary Burrill. Nova Scotians will elect their next government on May 30. Global News

Wednesday saw Nova Scotia’s major political parties announce plans on two subjects — pre-primary and health care.

Both the Tories and NDP spent the day focusing on health-care announcements.

Gary Burrill, the NDP leader, promised to address what he called “hallway medicine,” and end overcrowding in the province’s emergency departments. Progressive Conservative Leader Jamie Baillie also referenced the overburdened health-care system in the province, saying that it was clear more doctors and specialists were needed.

READ MORE: Nova Scotia Election: Tracking party promises on diversity

Baillie says that if his party were to form a government, they would spend $13.5 million over four years to recruit more doctors in the province’s under-serviced areas. He suggested that the Tory plan would recognize credentials for Canadians who study medicine abroad. The PCs would also double the tuition relief program to $6 million to keep new family doctors in Nova Scotia.

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Liberal Leader Stephen McNeil stuck to the pre-primary care plan announced in their budget — that didn’t go to a vote — prior to the election call.

The plan envisions 25 children under the age of four in each class with two early childhood educators supervising. According to McNeil, a Liberal government would begin the program this fall in 30 locations, mostly in existing schools. Within four years it would be fully implemented throughout the province.

The Liberal leader also noted that by the end of the four-year roll out, the pre-primary care plan would cost $49.4 million each year.

Nova Scotians will go to the polls on May 30.

— With files from The Canadian Press