The move to per capita transfers means that health care transfers will not be based on need, but on population alone. We know there are a number of provinces with smaller populations and many with a disproportionately large number of seniors -- it will cost those provinces more in order to deliver the care they need, when they need it.
Expenditures on public health care in Canada appear to be slowing, raising the possibility that the health care cost curve is finally being bent and the system transformed. What does this mean? The economy will eventually recover and relax provincial health expenditure constraints, but federal health transfer growth will be reduced starting in 2017.
The elimination of the Health Council only further underlines this movement away from national planning for better outcomes. That the Council's disappearance is part and parcel of a larger strategy of the elimination of the dissenting and unbiased voice -- something that is so needed in a democracy -- is downright disturbing.
Rather than go backwards to a time before medicare, we can focus on the more important business of reforming the health delivery system so that it will improve the quality of life for all Canadians, not just a privileged few.