Doug Allan, a Toronto-based trade union health care researcher and health coalition organizer, will be speaking on “Lessons from Canada’s Public Health Care System” in a series of three events in the eastern United States this week. His U.S. tour is being sponsored by Friends of the People’s Weekly World/Nuestro Mundo.

“Canada’s universal public health care system covers services like doctors and hospitalization for all, regardless of wealth,” Allan told the World. “Canadians are fearful of encroaching privatization and ‘American-style’ for-profit corporate health care,” he said. They know, however, that “public health care is something worth fighting for.”

Allan is an authority on the Canadian health care system, particularly in Ontario, Canada’s most populous province. A key focus of his work has been working with others to stop the privatization of Canada’s health care services. While advocates of privatization in Canada have recently been set back in their quest to privatize the country’s single-payer insurance system, they are unrelenting in their efforts to privatize the health care delivery system – hospitals, clinics, tests, and homecare, for example.

Allan will share some of the experiences of Canadian unions and health coalitions – door-to-door canvassing, lawn signs, electoral campaigns, and more – in their struggles to preserve and expand the public health care system there.

Allan’s remarks should be of considerable interest to audiences in the United States, where health care costs are spiraling out of control and where at least 40 million people lack health care insurance. The Congressional Budget Office has recently estimated that up to 59 million people are uninsured at least briefly in any given year.

Readers in the Baltimore, Philadelphia, and Cambridge, Mass., areas should try to see Doug Allan at the following events below.

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Doug Allan tour schedule

Saturday, Nov. 8, 7:30 p.m.
People’s Weekly World/Mundo Forum
Stony Run Friends Meeting House
5116 N. Charles St., Baltimore
Suggested donation: $5
Information: (410) 433-3269

Sunday, Nov. 9, 2:00 p.m.
People’s Weekly World/Mundo Banquet
Holiday Inn, Stadium
10th & Packer, Philadelphia
Tickets $38; students, unemployed $23
Information: (215) 222-8895

Cambridge, Mass.
Monday, Nov. 10, 7:00 p.m.
Wine and cheese reception
CME in Cambridge
Central Square
550 Massachusetts Ave.
Information: (617) 354-2876