Election 2020: OBA on healthcare
The One Bermuda Alliance said that it would make public healthcare and effective social support “matters of national security and the highest economic priority”.
The party outlined its plans on healthcare, climate change and protecting the vulnerable at a press conference today.
Catherine Kempe, OBA candidate for Devonshire North West, said that universal healthcare coverage for all was a priority. “The OBA has committed to working with all stakeholders on healthcare reform with the interests of all Bermudians in mind,” she said.
She outlined a plan to create patient identifier numbers for all residents to ensure that everyone has coverage, to reduce duplication of services and to drive down healthcare costs.
She said that the system would also help streamline services while quantifying those who are uninsured or underinsured.
The OBA would create a Bill of Rights for citizens ensuring they understand their coverage and have rights to information about physician’s credentials and complaints against healthcare providers.
She added: “We will introduce mandated coverage of pre-existing conditions above and beyond the government legislative plans, ensure that our children can stay on their parents’ policy until the age of 25 years of age whether or not they are students.
“We will ensure funding for Bermudians to enter the healthcare field for employment thus improving employment opportunities for Bermudians and reducing our dependency on work permit holders.”
She added that an OBA government would ensure that mental health would be covered equally to physical health by insurance.
Vic Ball, OBA Smith’s West candidate, said that the party would commit to renewable energy options and position Bermuda as a “world green centre”.
Mr Ball said: “We will create well designed policies that will strengthen social protection and support green investments that are financially viable, and conducive to economic growth.
“We will create new markets by stimulating demand for green technologies goods and services and implement a community fish market to assist fishermen with sales.
“We will properly fund fisheries wardens and change legislation to ensure prosecution of those who violate environmental legislation.”
He said that legislation would be introduced to eliminate single-use plastics while there would be tax incentives to stimulate local food production.
The party would also promote the Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences as a global leader of marine studies and a leader in the climate change movements with the introduction of a think tank and annual conferences.
Jon Brunson, the OBA’s Warwick North East candidate, committed to be an advocate for the vulnerable.
“The OBA will offer a combination of legal provisions, direct support, community interaction, training and partnership,” he said.
“The ultimate aim is to provide our people with support, practical and emotional tools, and life skills to advance them from economic support to wealth,” he said.
Mr Brunson said that the OBA would match the social insurance benefits for our seniors to cost of living and would establish a seniors’ advocate office.
He added: “The OBA will ensure there is child protective training for teachers and community workers and that mandatory counselling is required for those convicted of sexual offences as part of their parole requirements. We will ensure that all allegations of child abuse are reported to the Department of Child and Family Services and equally to the police.
“We will amend the criminal code to outlaw cyber bullying and the advancement of the differently abled, among others, ensuring physical access to buildings and transport.”
Mr Brunson stressed: “Unless we have a strong economy everything else fails.”
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