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Privatization of Health Care Costly to Canadians: Study

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Issue: 19 Section: Canadian News Geography: Canada Topics: privatization, health

June 25, 2004

Privatization of Health Care Costly to Canadians: Study

A McMaster study just published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal shows that Canadians would pay an extra $7.2 billion a year if the federal government decides to fund private health care with public money. The study lists profit, larger executive bonuses, and more administration costs as the top three reasons why the system would cost Canadians so much more money.
Gordon Guyatt, the NDP candidate running in the Ancaster-Dundas-Flamborough-Westdale riding, is one of the ongoing study's researchers. Since the NDP is the only mainstream party that is solidly against health care privatization, a bias could easily be associated with the study. However, the study is exhaustively based on eight others involving over 350,000 patients that were treated in both not-for-profit and for-profit US hospitals between 1980 and 1995. As well, two Harvard professors, in writing the editorial accompanying the study, praised the study as "meticulous."

The Conservatives have said that they will not oppose provinces that decide to privatize health care. Alberta premier Ralph Klein has already stated that that on June 30--immediately after the election--he will introduce changes that will allow for more private health-care options in Alberta. The Liberals say they prefer to keep health care public, but a variety of private services are already being provided without much opposition.

» Hamilton Spectator: Private Health Would Cost $7.2B More

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The Dominion is a monthly paper published by an incipient network of independent journalists in Canada. It aims to provide accurate, critical coverage that is accountable to its readers and the subjects it tackles. Taking its name from Canada's official status as both a colony and a colonial force, the Dominion examines politics, culture and daily life with a view to understanding the exercise of power.

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