Invest in Medicare: Stop privatization

The issue:

Health care emergency: Patients are struggling to receive timely access to care. Frontline healthcare workers are stressed, and hospital wait times are getting longer, but some provinces are failing to sufficiently invest in public healthcare.

Weak accountability: The federal government has committed $198 billion over 10 years in provincial health transfers with few strings attached (Macdonald, 2023).

Privatization: Some provinces are outsourcing medical services to private for-profit clinics that will draw even more health care workers away from public hospitals, and put patients at risk of extra-billing or high-pressure upselling of non-insured services.

The solution:

Strings attached: It is important federal funding comes with strings attached to ensure the dollars are spent by the provinces on ways that improve patient outcomes.

Protect patients: The Health Minister must continue to vigorously enforce the principles and conditions of the Canada Health Act, and beef-up investigation and monitoring for prohibited practices such as user fees and extra billing.

Public care: Public dollars, including federal transfers, should support our cost-effective public, non-profit health care system, and not be squandered on profits to investors in private for-profit clinics.

[Data] shows that knee replacement surgery in a public hospital, paid by the province, costs about $10,000. The same surgery in a private clinic can reportedly cost patients up to $28,000.”

Cuttler, M. & Birak, C. (2023). Do private, for-profit clinics save taxpayers money and reduce wait times? The data says no. Retrieved from website:

Macdonald, D. (2023, February). No strings attached – Canada’s health care deal lacks key conditions. Retrieved from The Monitor, Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives website:

Read more:

Canadian Health Coalition. (February, 2024). Parliamentarians’ Briefing Note 2024