OTTAWA – NDP Health critic Libby Davies (Vancouver East) is pleased that the Conservatives are reconsidering their irresponsible plan to approve a privately owned plasma clinic in Toronto without any consultation.
“We’re asking the Minister of Health to do a full and meaningful consultation with her provincial counterpart as well as other stakeholders to ensure that the repercussions of opening up a for profit blood clinic are thoroughly evaluated,” said Davies. “I’m hoping that this won’t simply be a way for the Conservatives to justify a foregone decision.”
The recent announcement of the federal government’s plans to approve a privately owned plasma clinic in Toronto, where people will receive financial compensation for their blood, raised serious questions about public health and the ethics of paying for blood. A thorough study of these issues must include an assessment of the social impacts of opening the clinic beside a homeless shelter and how it would affect voluntary blood donation.
“In the 1980s, blood from for-profit brokers was a significant contributor to the tainted blood scandal where 20,000 Canadians were infected with HIV and hepatitis C,” said Davies. “It is our responsibility to ensure that that sad chapter in Canadian history is never repeated.”