AT OUR CLUB March 3, 2020

The Honourable Minister of Health for Canada, Patty Hajdu, found time in her very busy schedule to address Rotarians and guests today. It was much appreciated. 

Minister Hajdu has made a meteoric rise in national politics from her earlier life helping and advocating for the less fortunate.  She was introduced by Rotarian Past-President and friend John Stephenson as a strong, principled, compassionate advocate who possesses a unique courage.

Minister Hajdu began by admitting her work is highly demanding but very rewarding.  She then highlighted a number of directions and goals followed by her office and government.  Among them: 
  • alleviating poverty and developing a national strategy
  • job skills investment
  • a national strategy for improving inclusivity for women, indigenous people, immigrants etc.
  • tackling climate change and the national obligation
  • next steps toward a national pharmacare plan
  • "primary health care" for all
  • improving the approach to mental health and addiction issues, with primary prevention stressed
  • an overview of the current Covid-19 issue, perhaps a pandemic in the making. This big topic required her to find a measured and rational response based on science and yet still understanding the fear surrounding it.  Having an open conversation is critical. She currently reassured us of good communication and integration of health care experts across the country.
  • dealing with reconciliation with Indigenous peoples: a realistic approach will not be easy... it is a "lifelong journey".

Patty is indebted to Rotary for its work ethic and she spoke specifically of the 4-Way Test...simple enough to say but a difficult challenge to put into practice.

She graciously gave time for Q and A.

Minister Patty Hajdu is pictured (centre) with her Admin Assistant Megan Wyant (far left), John Stephenson, Past Rotary President and friend, Jackie Dojack who thanked her very professionally and today's meeting Chair President-elect Krysta Logozzo-Danielle.

The club is indebted to Minister Hajdu for this fine presentation today.