News Roundup [abridged Versions Appear In The Paper Journal]

Canada's healthcare system should focus on primary care, report says

BMJ 2002; 325 doi: (Published 07 December 2002) Cite this as: BMJ 2002;325:1320
  1. David Spurgeon
  1. Quebec

    Sweeping and expensive changes have been proposed to ensure the long term sustainability of Canada's healthcare system. The proposals are contained in a report from the Royal Commission on the Future of Health Care in Canada, which was chaired by lawyer and former politician Roy Romanow.

    The report's 47 detailed recommendations, which include implementation timeframes, will cost the federal government $C15bn (£6.2bn; US$9.6bn; €9.6bn) more than the budget currently forecast for health by 2005-6.

    In presenting his report Romanow, former premier of the province of Saskatchewan, where Canada's Medicare was born 40 years ago, voiced his strong opposition to private, for profit healthcare programmes. Their failure, he said, was the reason for establishing Canada's public system in the first place, and Canadians were sceptical of them. Over the past 18 months his research included consultations involving tens of thousands of ordinary citizens and health …

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