Universal Drug Plan Makes Good Sense

    SASKATOON, Nov. 2 /CNW/ - The Service Employees International Union
(SEIU) is announcing today its total support for the Saskatchewan NDP proposed
universal prescription drug plan. SEIU has campaigned to save Medicare for
years on both provincial and federal fronts.
    "Saskatchewan is a leader when it comes to health care legislation," says
International Canadian Vice-President Sharleen Stewart, "It is the birthplace
of Medicare and one of the first provinces to make safety-engineered medical
devices mandatory in all health care facilities, and Saskatchewan will be the
leader in universal drug coverage if the NDP are re-elected."
    Critics told Tommy Douglas that Medicare was not sustainable and that the
province could not afford it. Saskatchewan proved those cynics wrong, and the
entire nation adopted Douglas' vision.
    "Experts agree that this provincial drug plan is sustainable and will
help everyone in Saskatchewan. Farmers, families, children, students, seniors,
every resident will benefit," said Stewart. "The Saskatchewan Party's plan
excludes everyone except those 14 and under or 65 and older."
    Steve Morgan from the University of British Columbia is quoted in the
Regina Leader-Post, October 12, 2007, saying: "Canadians pay more money on
prescription drugs than we do paying doctors for all the services they provide
for us." The NDP plan will allow everyone to be free of the worry of how to
pay for high prescription drug costs.
    A universal drug program would allow drug therapy treatments to be fully
utilized, and allow for people to manage their health issues before surgery is
needed. Fixed prescription costs will allow business to re-invest bene1fit
plan money into other aspects of their health care plan. Instead of paying for
ever rising prescription drug costs, individuals will be able to afford to
participate in a more healthy lifestyle and alternative therapies.
    "The NDP appears to be the only political party that has the courage and
conviction to do what is fair by sharing the economic benefits of Saskatchewan
with all the citizens of Saskatchewan," Stewart adds. "We are hoping that they
will lead the rest of the country to a universal, affordable, comprehensive
prescription drug plan as a pillar of Medicare."

    The Service Employees International Union is the largest and fastest
growing union in North America, with 98,000 workers in Canada and 1.8 million
workers worldwide.

For further information:

For further information: Sharleen Stewart, SEIU International Canadian
Vice-President, (416) 209-7741; Christine Miller, National Representative -
Communications, 1-800-337-3798 ext. 224 or (416) 576-5041

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