Debate rages on in the news, coffee shops, office water-coolers and pretty much anywhere we go regarding this phenomenon known as the “No Zero Policy.” To date I have not met a single educated person who agrees with this ridiculous policy. Of course I haven’t had an opportunity to speak with any of the geniuses in the school system who put more trust in “gurus” than they do in science and fact. Suffice it to say, any reasonable, thinking, successful person will tell you the no zero policy is an insult to those who work hard to achieve their goals in life.
What message are we sending to our children if they are permitted to pass without completing or, as in many cases, not even attempting to complete assignments received in school? Are we telling them that it is okay to be a slacker? Are we relaying to them the message the world does indeed owe them a living? How can anything good come out of sending our children on to university, college, or into the workforce completely ill prepared for the realities these institutions will force them to face? Yet these are precisely the messages we are sending them out there with.
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One of the hardest things to do when you move to a new city is finding a good family doctor. I resided in Edmonton for more than a decade before I found one. Rather than go through the turmoil of pouring through the Yellow Pages just to be told “we are not accepting new patients at this time,” I would just make use of the emergency rooms and medi-centres when I needed a driver’s medical or a prescription.
When my medical condition was progressing with no cure or control in sight I happened to mention to a friend that I needed to find a family doc who could figure out what was wrong with me. Fortunately, for me, my friend’s family doc would take new patients, but only with a referral from a current patient. So after 11 years in the province I now had, and have to this day, a family doctor.
Today, the Edmonton Area PCN (Primary Care Network) announced a new website that will take a lot of the hassle out of finding a family doctor. What are the benefits of using the services of a PCN? A PCN is a group of family doctors working with a multidisciplinary team and Alberta Health Services to coordinate health services for patients. A PCN is not necessarily a bricks and mortar building – it is a network of doctors and other health providers such as nurses, dietitians, mental health professionals, therapists, pharmacists and others working together to provide primary health care to patients.
The new user friendly website, www.edmontonareadocs.ca will be updated quarterly. PCN doctors can be searched using the Edmonton and area map, gender, location and language spoken.
This is a great idea, though way overdue in arriving!!
For more information and updates follow @yegSouthsidePCN on Twitter.
“Rather than getting your facts from the media, get them from your MLA”
Now, if you’ve read my second post about how the media has played a large role in Alberta politics and done your home work by reading Professor Epp’s 1984 paper on the relationship between Premier Lougheed and the media, you would have read that along with advising his MLAs to get cozy with journalists and editorialists, Mr Lougheed also became less and less available to the media himself. Why would he? Why take the chance of a stumble when your MLAs were available. They read from your script with no harm to yourself if the masses happen to turn on you. (Well, maybe not Tom Sindlinger. Goodbye Tom) What script? The PCAA set up their own media relations department that would spread the “word” to all corners of the province via the MLAs which the media, both print and broadcast, would pick up as “news” and repeat to the people of Alberta. Pretty slick I think. The government writes it’s own news. Under pressure of time constraints and laziness by the media we learned what our government was doing straight from the government, written by the government. The media seemed to be doing their job but in reality they were being used by the government of Alberta and being used willingly. (It’s called copy and paste now.) I should mention here that there was the odd journalist who either took his/her job seriously or wasn’t a fan of the PCAA, who wrote a scorching article or two but these people were seen as malcontents by their peers and the public or worse yet NDP/Liberal shills and dismissed because the majority of the “news” was positive.
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