New Poll: Canadians Keen for Health Reform
- 72% like the idea of copying a European Union policy to reduce waiting lists. The policy allows for patients to be reimbursed for surgeries abroad.
- Majority also support hiring private clinics to reduce surgical backlogs.
A new poll commissioned by think tank SecondStreet.org shows that Canadians continue to show overwhelming support for health reform, including governments hiring private clinics to reduce surgical backlogs, allowing more choices for patients, copying an EU policy and increased accountability when it comes to patient deaths due to long waiting lists.
“Canadians appear to be very keen for governments to move forward with health reform,” said SecondStreet.org President Colin Craig. “Overall, reform has been slow, but we’re seeing some positive changes in Canada, such as governments hiring private clinics to reduce surgical waiting lists. Canadians overwhelmingly support that approach.”
Key highlights from the poll include:
● 72% support copying a European Union (EU) policy called the Cross Border Directive. This policy would give Canadian patients the right to visit public or private health facilities outside the province, pay for surgery and then be reimbursed by their provincial government (up to what their government would have spent to provide the surgery locally).
● 64% support governments hiring private clinics to reduce surgical backlogs. Despite concerns raised by government employee unions, only 20% of Canadians oppose this option.
● 51% support letting Canadians use their own money to pay for surgery at private clinics.
● 66% believe health ministers should have to hold a press conference each year to announce the number of patients who died the previous year due to long waiting lists.
The online poll was conducted by Leger for SecondStreet.org between October 2 – October 7, 2022 and included 1,534 Canadians.
“Canadians also really like the idea of copying a policy in the European Union that allows patients to be reimbursed for surgeries abroad,” added Craig. “It’s not a perfect solution, but it could provide immediate relief for patients who are suffering and reduce waiting lists.”
To view our policy brief and the full poll results – click here
You can help us continue to research and tell stories about this issue by making a donation or sharing this content with your friends. Be sure to sign up for our updates too!