Canadians are paying into one of the world’s most expensive healthcare systems but aren’t getting full value for that investment, according to a new report from Morneau Shepell that suggests a major overhaul is needed. “The crux of the problem is that our system places too much emphasis on acute care and not enough on prevention,” says Fred Vettese, the company’s chief actuary and author of the Vision Report, Canada’s Health Care System – Time for an Intervention.
The report says Canada spends much more on its elderly than every other country except the U.S., but our elderly are no healthier than those in Europe or Japan. By 2031, the report says, nearly half of our healthcare resources will serve those aged 75 and over, even though they will represent only 1/9th of the population.
According to the report, failure to overhaul the current healthcare system and implement solutions designed to increase return on investment will result in a major increase in taxes or reduction in the quality of healthcare provided. It lists ‘possible fixes’ including:
- user-based funding, such as a $10 fee per doctor visit, to reduce the number of questionable consultations;
- health credits to make consumers price-sensitive without restricting access to services; and
- evidence-based medicine to help direct resources to the most effective treatments and improve overall efficiency.
As Canadians, what do you think about our Health Care system?