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Saturday, June 16, 2012 

If Dalton McGuinty And Ontario Liberals CAN'T Provide Medical Care For One Small Visually Impaired Boy, Then The NDP Should Pull The Plug And Let The Bastards Explain Their Incompetence To Voters!

TORONTO - Always read the fine print. And when dealing with the McGuinty government, always remember that the devil is in the details.At a media event in Scarborough Wednesday, I asked the premier if he’d intervene in the case of Whitby tot Liam Reid, who needs urgent surgery with a specialist in Detroit to save his sight. This, in part, was his response:
“We want to make sure that we’re doing what we can to ensure that Liam and his family can access the best possible quality care here in Ontario,” Dalton McGuinty said.
“If we can’t offer that care here in Ontario, then we’ve got a responsibility to make sure he can access that care elsewhere.”

Some thought that was a victory for Liam and his parents, Kristina and Dave. McGuinty went on: “I think there are a few surgeons who have the level of expertise necessary to do this.”

That’s a devilish detail.

“If we can’t offer that care here in Ontario,” is a major qualifier. And for him to go on to suggest there are other surgeons who can perform the surgery tells me the health ministry is not paying attention to what the Reid family is saying.

Just across the border in Detroit, Dr. Michael Trese is world renowned for performing the kind of operation Liam needs.

The Reids have already spent $45,000 for treatment with Trese.
They’ve received hundreds of offers from people willing to either pay for the surgery outright or put money in a trust fund for Liam.

Kristina says they’re waiting for OHIP to do the right thing and will only take private cash as a last resort. Donations are a Band-Aid. They don’t want to keep going cap in hand to private donors every time Liam needs treatment.

“Long-term, we need the support of our ministry, we need the support of our government. Currently, we’re not getting that support. We can’t continue to rely on the goodwill of the residents of Ontario and Canada,” she told me. Health Minister Deb Matthews insists we have to explore every avenue in this province before Liam can go to Detroit.

“We have world-class expertise at SickKids hospital. We have extraordinarily skilled and talented physicians,” Matthews told reporters Thursday. “I think it’s important when care is available in Ontario, that that’s where care is delivered.”

Except docs at the Hospital for Sick Children operated unsuccessfully on Liam’s right eye and have told the family they can do no more. Tory MPP Christine Elliott says it’s unacceptable Liam’s family is being told to take him back to SickKids for more tests, especially since he has to undergo a general anesthetic for that examination.

“I would suggest that it’s important for HSC to step up and let the government know whether they can or cannot treat Liam,” Elliott said. “He’s not a guinea pig. He’s a child and I don’t see any reason why his family should be put through any more than they’ve gone through on this.
“The records are very clear and there’s no indication at this point that there’s a specialist in Ontario who’s able to treat this child,” she said, pointing out that since another child in the province is getting out-of-country care paid for by OHIP for exactly the same condition Liam has, fairness dictates he get it as well.

Enough’s enough. Liam’s fighting a tough enough battle as it is.

Pitting this lovely little family against a monstrous, uncaring bureaucracy is hideous. Send Liam to Detroit — now.

While the Ontario Liberals strike an ideological pose and attempt to deflect and baffle, one fact is inescapable. They are standing on their hands doing nothing and allowing a child to go blind. Every Canadian should feel ashamed by this cruelty. I know I do.

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