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Canada (158,456)
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GEOG 1HA3 (22)

1ha3 health care debate.docx

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McMaster University
Michael Mercier

BACKGROUND TO THE CANADIAN HEALTH CARE SYSTEM: Federalism and the healthcare system: under the Canadian constitution health care falls largely under the authority of the provinces. Only provincial governments have the power to pass laws governing the financing and delivery of health services. This is the reason for the variety of provincial healthcare policies. Although the provincial polices are unique the government spends “10’s of billions of dollars annually to support all of them”. Funding is given if the provinces meet the Canadian health act. Primary Care services (supplied by government): are largely provided by independent family doctors, community health clinics or telephone health information lines. Primary health care serves two main functions; direct provision of first contact services (ex: injuries, diseases, non- cosmetic surgery), and basic emergency services. The other function of primary care is the coordination of moving patients to other levels of medical care (ex: referred to a specialist or private care which exceed the primary care limits) Secondary Care services / private (specialist doctors): prescription drug therapy, acute emergency care, rehabilitation services, cosmetic surgery, counselling and palliative care. Secondary / Private health care can be located in regular hospitals or in a private place. Health insurance plans by ( ex: teacher unions)and payment by citizens for uncovered specialist health services (ex: Cosmetic surgery) are two examples of Canada’s private health system. It is specifically for specialist doctors, not general practitioners. Additional Care Services / Private (even more specialized): Dental care, vision care, health insurance plans. NOTE: what is included in additional care services can vary from one province to another. The four possibilities of different types of possible health care systems Public
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