Registed Nurses' Association of Ontario

Prime Minister Harper: Reverse Cuts to the Interim Federal Health Program

Prime Minister Harper: Reverse Cuts to the Interim Federal Health Program

For almost sixty years, refugees arriving in Canada have received health-care coverage. Two years ago, the federal government moved to deny refugees and their families a basic human right when it made cuts to the Interim Federal Health Program (IFHP) claiming it would save money. The changes implemented on July 1, 2012 have actually resulted in higher costs and caused harm to families who had to resort to hospital emergency rooms because they were either denied primary care or delayed receiving care because they had no other choice.

This was predicted by front-line RNs, NPs and physicians. Toronto’s Hospital for Sick Children recently documented what happens when treatment is delayed. Before the IFHP cuts were made, only 6.4 per cent of refugee children appearing in the emergency department had to be admitted. After the IFHP cuts were implemented, the admission rate for refugee children doubled to 12 per cent. IFHP cuts have negative health impacts on individuals and families and make the health-care system less efficient while downloading costs from the federal government to the provincial health-care system.

What Can YOU Do?

  • Sign the action alert below addressed to Prime Minister Harper. Copies will also be sent to Leader of the Official Opposition, Thomas Mulcair; Leader of the Liberal Party of Canada, Justin Trudeau; Leader of the Green Party, Elizabeth May; Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Chris Alexander; NDP Critic for Citizenship and Immigration, Lysane Blanchette-Lamothe; and Liberal Critic for Citizenship and Immigration, John McCallum. You can edit the letter to reflect your outrage and experiences.
  • Share this action alert with network.
  • Join the Third National Day of Action on Monday, June 16, 2014 in your community. More details on events happening in Guelph, Hamilton, Kingston, Kitchener, London, Mississauga, Ottawa, and Toronto can be found here at
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