Danny Williams, the Premier of Newfoundland & Labrador, will undergo heart surgery in the United States.
It is not known where Williams will undergo treatment or when. Williams, a Progressive Conservative, has been Premier since 2003.
Naturally, there were questions of why Williams couldn't have undergone the procedure in Newfoundland. Acting Premier Kathy Dunderdale stated, "Having the surgery done in the province was never an option that was offered to him."
Dunderdale did not answer any questions as to if the procedure could have been done elsewhere in Canada but did say Williams would answer questions once he has recovered. It is estimated the recovery time could take anywhere from three to twelve weeks. According to Vickie Kaminski, the CEO of the province's largest health authority, Williams' decision to seek health care abroad "might be due be a procedure that can't be performed for whatever reason by medical professionals in the province."
For whatever reason? That sure covers a lot of ground. If Williams had to travel outside of Canada to have his heart procedure done because of a lack of qualified medical personnel to perform the procedure, a lack of health care technology or because of bureaucratic red tape it certainly doesn't inspire confidence in the Canadian health care system. If one of Canada's leaders doesn't trust his country's own health care system then why should anyone else? I am curious to hear his explanation. But first I wish him a speedy recovery.