Academic journal article Canadian Journal of Public Health

Wasting Away: The Undermining of Canadian Health Care, 2nd Edition

Academic journal article Canadian Journal of Public Health

Wasting Away: The Undermining of Canadian Health Care, 2nd Edition

Article excerpt

Wasting Away: The Undermining of Canadian Health Care, 2nd Edition Pat Armstrong, Hugh Armstrong. Don Mills, ON: Oxford Press, 2003; 272 pages

This text builds on the authors' previous work and provides a continuing analysis of the Canadian health care delivery system. It challenges conventional thinking around what works, what doesn't work and why based on the systems' underlying philosophical foundations, assumptions and practices. The basic thesis of the book argues that the health care system has failed due to the continued domination of the medical model (how to cure disease) and the control of one gender and profession (males, medicine). In addition, it argues that the system has failed to shift its thinking and focus to those factors that keep people healthy (determinants of health), the full range of caregivers needed to assist this process (including women, and volunteers), and the ways in which the system must be restructured (primary health care) to affect the actual health of our nation. The authors denunciate recent health care system reforms, promoted as a means for empowering the citizenry with increased control, but which have instead offloaded caregiver responsibility away from paid staff on to family and friends, and reduced access to services resulting in a generally uneven distribution of resources. …

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