HealthcarePapers 4(4) May 2004 : 45-50.doi:10.12927/hcpap..16853

Does the Private Sector Have a Role in Canadian Healthcare?

Tom McGowan


The current system of public pay with primarily public management for essential healthcare services has largely been successful. The Romanow and Kirby reports have made compelling arguments for expanding the definition of essential healthcare services to include, among other things, medications. The problem facing Canadians is that expanding services is not feasible under the current structure, as it is not affordable. The rigid adherence to a 45-year-old definition of system structure is hampering our ability to innovate. In an increasingly unresponsive system, the introduction of private management, through the judicious use of private contracts, can improve efficiency and increase accountability, while maintaining the important principle of public funding.



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