Conditions for healthcare money apply

The federal government will dish out money to fix provincial healthcare—hooray! 

There’s just one small catch: Provinces must commit to building (and contributing data to) a national health system that would increase transparency around how that money is spent. 

Why it matters: Healthcare systems in many parts of the country are under intense strain. Provincial Premiers, no matter how much they disagree at times, are united in their view that the federal government is not carrying its weight when it comes to paying for healthcare. 

  • The math behind who funds healthcare (a $186 billion annual bill) is complicated and contested, but the bottom line is that provinces want $40 billion more per year. 

Some Premiers aren’t totally satisfied with the terms that would apply: 

  • Quebec’s health minister has already rejected Ottawa’s proposal, saying the money should not come with any strings attached (like the requirement to share more data).

  • But Federal Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos said he’s willing to bypass Quebec (and anyone else who doesn’t want to play ball) by striking a separate deal. 

Bottom line: Canada’s healthcare system is over capacity: Surgeries are being delayed, wait times are rising, and emergency rooms are packed tighter than a free Drake concert. Now, the question is how much money will be made available to relieve that pressure.