I hope the title of this post does not get me tarred and feathered in public, but this issue is an elephant in the room for many people. I finished reading an article on this very topic, and thought I would open up debate. According to the article, New Brunswick Health Minister Michael Murphy continues to consider legislation to set the stage for private health clinics. I have seen the same topic come up in BC, Quebec and other jurisdictions.
Note: For the purposes of clarity on the remainder of this post, I am explicitly excluding the approximately 30% of healthcare services already delivered by private entities in Canada such as dental work, some drugs, etc.
I know that considering privatization of public healthcare services is considered blasphemy by the Canadian public, but is it time to reconsider? We see other Western nations delivering healthcare services with a hybrid private and public model. Just look at the health outcomes to cost indicators for hybrid jurisdictions such as New Zealand…they are better than Canada.
My questions for Mike or anyone else is:
1) Should Canada adopt a larger hybrid model (> the current 30% private) of private or public? What are the reasons for and against?
2) How much (and which services) should be private? Why?
3) How would a hybrid model impact on healthcare IT, or would it?