This commentary is about Canada's ability to afford a comprehensive pan-Canadian approach to elder care. In redefining the universal public system, a broad and more comprehensive definition of universal public care is needed for those whose physical or mental abilities are impaired. The Scandinavian model affirms that this is both effective and affordable. Comparisons of Canada with other nations in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development on taxation and spending levels reveal that there is room for Canada to increase taxation to fund a Scandinavian model while still having competitive tax and spending rates.