Budget 2022: Boost funding for frontline health workers, pharmacare and long-term care
The Canadian Health Coalition (CHC), representing organizations across Canadians, will look for significant improvements in public health care for patients, families, and frontline workers in Thursday’s Federal budget.
“New investments into programs and continuing progress towards universal national pharmacare are needed urgently,” said CHC Chairperson Pauline Worsfold. “Filled prescriptions mean empty emergency rooms, and a universal single-payer pharmacare program not only saves money, but more importantly, saves lives.”
CHC priorities include:
There is broad public and political support for a universal, single-payer pharmacare program as described in the 2019 Final Report of the Advisory Council on the Implementation of National Pharmacare. Budget 2022 should demonstrate progress towards this goal, with a firm financial commitment of – at a minimum – $3.5-billion towards essential medicines coverage as recommended by the Advisory Council.
Long-term care standards
Now is the time to repair the damage caused by chronic underfunding and profit-based health care. Budget 2022 is an important opportunity to fulfil the government’s election promise to work collaboratively with provinces and territories to support seniors through a Safe Long-Term Care Act with enforceable standards and an investment of $9-billion over five years.
Federal funding for provinces and territories
The CHC has urged the federal government to increase its share of health care spending with provinces and territories through programs such as pharmacare and long-term care with strict reporting mechanisms to ensure accountability in public health care.
The Canadian Health Coalition was founded in 1979 to support public health care. It comprises unions representing frontline health care workers, community groups, and researchers.