Canadian Medical Association

In reaction to today’s ruling on Cambie Surgeries Corporation v. British Columbia, the Canadian Medical Association reaffirms its position that public funding needs to meet the health care needs of all Canadians, from primary to tertiary care as prescribed by the Canada Health Act (CHA). Importantly, all Canadians should have timely and equitable access to care not based on their ability to pay. 
The legal challenge initiated a decade ago highlights some of the ongoing challenges our health care system has been facing, many of which are now exacerbated by the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. For too long, funding has not kept pace with efforts to improve how we care for our ageing population, expand equitable access to virtual care, and bolster primary care teams. An increased investment to address these issues would ensure that Canadians have wide-ranging access to the health care they need, when and where they need it. 
We continue to call for change to our health care system, where the needs of patients are our first priority. 
While we recognize that today’s decision is an important moment in the history of our publicly funded health care system, it should represent an opportunity to reflect on what the future of our health care system can and should be for all Canadians.

Dr. Ann Collins
President, Canadian Medical Association

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