The Canadian Health Coalition and the University of Ottawa’s Centre for Health Law, Policy and Ethics are marking the 40th anniversary of the Canada Health Act on June 20 in Ottawa with a roundtable featuring some of the country’s foremost researchers on public health care.

The researchers will discuss –

  • Challenges related to upholding the criteria and conditions of the Canada Health Act
  • Risks posed from increased privatization of insured health services by some provinces and territories
  • Social determinants of health
  • Racism and systemic inequities in health care

The research roundtable will be an opportunity to share promising practices and build partnerships across diverse disciplines and backgrounds. It will also inform public health care advocacy.

June 20, 2024 – University of Ottawa


  • $100 registration fee for full-time faculty and those with institutional/organizational support
  • $50 registration fee for contract faculty, and those without institutional/organizational support
  • Limited participation subsidies are available. Contact Tracy at
  • Book offer – Health for All: A Doctor’s Prescription for a Healthier Canada (Hardcover – April 9, 2024) by Jane Philpott. $35 incl. HST. The author will sign the book at the event. Purchase the book at the registration link.


Desmarais Building, Room 4104, University of Ottawa

Google Maps


Downloadable Program

8:00 AM | Registration opens

8:45 – 9:00 AM | Welcome

9:00 – 9:45 AM | The 2024 Canada Health Act Annual Report

  • Jennifer Goodyer, Executive Director, Canada Health Act Division, Health Canada
  • Lee Whitman, Assistant Director of Compliance and Interpretation, Health Canada

10:00 – 11:00 AM | Creeping Privatization

  • Andrew Longhurst, Simon Fraser University – Blurring the lines: health care outsourcing and private payment
  • Danyal Raza, University of Toronto/Unity Health Toronto, and Sheryl Spithoff, Women’s College Hospital/University of Toronto – Paying with more than your credit card: The rise of for-profit virtual care & the commercialization of patient data
  • Rebecca Graff-McRae, Parkland Institute, University of Alberta – ‘Innovation’ Guinea Pig or Canary in the Privatization Coalmine? A case study of medical laboratory services in Alberta

11:00 – 12:00 PM | Winning Pharmacare

  • Marc-André Gagnon, Carleton University – L’Assurance-santé à 40 ans; l’assurance-médicaments en gestation [Health Insurance at age 40; drug insurance in the making]
  • Nik Barry-Shaw, Council of Canadians – How Big Pharma is Poisoning the Public Debate on Pharmacare: Think Tanks, Experts and Conflicts of Interest
  • Joel Lexchin, York University – Quality and quantity of data used by Health Canada in approving new drugs       

12:00 – 1:00 PM | Lunch Provided

1:00 – 1:30 PM | Ten Unhelpful Myths Revisited about the Canada Health Act

  • Greg Marchildon, University of Toronto, and Bill Tholl, McMaster University and Canadian Health Leadership Network

1:30 – 2:30 PM | Expanding Medicare

  • David Macdonald, Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives – Missing teeth: Who’s left out of Canada’s dental care plan
  • Sarah Kennell, Canadian Mental Health Association – Righting the wrongs of the past: addressing the exclusion of mental health & substance use health services from the Canada Health Act
  • Suzanne Dupuis-Blanchard, Université de Moncton – Aging in Place: Advancing Public Health Care and the Canada Health Act

2:30 – 3:30 PM | Revisiting the Canada Health Act

  • Yin Yuan (Y.Y.) Chen, University of Ottawa – Revisiting the Waiting Period Allowance under the Canada Health Act
  • Marie Carpentier, Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM) – Le droit international à la rescousse de la Loi canadienne sur la santé [International law to the rescue of the Canada Health Act]
  • Martha Paynter, University of New Brunswick – Barriers to abortion without barring abortion: Addressing private costs in family planning care        

4:00 – 5:00 PM | Public Health Care Solutions and Enforcement

  • Edward Xie, Canadian Doctors for Medicare – Public Solutions to Reduce Wait Times in Canadian Health Care
  • Natalie Stake–Doucet, Université de Montréal/Quebec Nurses Association – The Nurse Retention Toolkit and the Canada Health Act
  • Frederique Chabot, Action Canada for Sexual Health & Rights and Celia Zhang, LEAF (Women’s Legal Education and Action Fund) – The Abortion Access Tracker
  • Ian Johnson & Dr. Robert Barkwell, Nova Scotia Health Coalition – Importance of Enforcement for the Canada Health Act

5:00 – 5:30 pm | Fireside Chat with Jane Philpott

5:30 – 6:30 PM | Book signing with Jane Philpott and reception     

For more information, contact Tracy at    

Organized by the Canadian Health Coalition and the University of Ottawa’s Centre for Health Law, Policy and Ethics, with support from St. Thomas University.