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Quebec opposition party wants private clinics to help fight COVID-19

Quebec Solidaire co-spokesperson Manon Masse attends the party's national council meeting in Montreal, Sunday, December 9, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS IMAGES/Graham Hughes. THE CANADIAN PRESS IMAGES/Graham Hughes

Quebec opposition party Québec Solidaire (QS) will ask Premier François Legault to fully integrate the staff and resources of private clinics into the public health network to counter the skyrocketing number of hospitalizations linked to COVID-19.

QS spokesperson Manon Massé believes that since many Quebec hospitals are overwhelmed and fear the implementation of a triage protocol, the integration of private clinics is a reasonable response.

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According to Massé, while hospitals may soon be deciding which patients will receive life-saving care and who will be left to die, the private health care sector continues to operate as if the pandemic did not exist. Massé says that Legault owes an explanation to the tens of thousands of patients affected by hospital overcrowding and that he should mobilize private sector resources before things get worse.

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Massé points to a QS investigation that shows several private clinics in the province continue to offer non-urgent and unnecessary operations, including buttock augmentation, liposuction, and hemorrhoids removal, despite the critical situation in hospitals.

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According to Massé, Christian Dubé, Quebec’s Minister of Health and Social Services, claims that the staff of private clinics do not have the necessary expertise to integrate with the public network, but she says some private clinics are already offering their services.

She insists that private resources must be called into service because lives depend on them.

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