MP Blaney joins international parliamentarians panel to address universal health care during COVID-19

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North Island-Powell River MP Rachel Blaney will be addressing the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) as part of the panel on universal health coverage in times of COVID-19 on Tuesday.

Members of parliament from Zambia and Thailand as well as an expert from World Health Organization will be making presentations as well.

The Inter-Parliamentary Union is a global organization of 179 member national parliaments that promotes democratic governance, institutions and values. In October of 2019 the IPU adopted a resolution calling for all national parliaments to take steps towards achieving universal health coverage by 2030. Six months later parliaments and healthcare systems in every country in the world were dealing with a global pandemic.

“It’s always an honour to represent our country at an international forum,” said Blaney, and added, “especially when the topic is something we are so proud of as New Democrats and as Canadians.”

In her speech Blaney will talk about the present universal healthcare as a “hallmark of Canadian identity,” but also as an “imperfect and incomplete project.”

She will speak to the shortcomings and inequities that have been exposed by the COVID-19 pandemic, and the urgency and challenges it has presented to bringing about the changes needed to create a truly universal health care system that is accessible to all and covers all aspects of our health.

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Binny Paul, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Campbell River Mirror