A new deal for better health care for all Canadians
When our loved ones fall ill, we shouldn’t worry about whether they can afford to get the care they need.
This principle is at the heart of New Democrats’ unwavering commitment to public health care. Universal access to public health care is one of the proudest achievements of New Democrats. And in the decades since Tommy Douglas brought Medicare to Saskatchewan and expanded it across the entire country, public health care has saved us money and become a defining Canadian value for so many of us.
But today, too many of the health care services we need – like access to prescription medications – fall outside Medicare, leaving families to face huge out-of-pocket costs. Meanwhile, powerful people and companies who oppose public health care are continuing to quietly push for privatization, threatening what we’ve built together. And for years, Liberal and Conservative governments have cut health care transfers and refused to expand access to care, making things worse.
Families are spending time and money they can’t afford, or are sacrificing other things to pay for needed health care. Or they are getting sicker unnecessarily because they can’t afford, or find the right care at the right time.
It’s not just a crisis for individuals, it’s a crisis for all of us.
New Democrats will change that. We are committed to strengthening public health care – and expanding it to make sure everyone is covered for the care they need to get and stay healthier longer.
That’s why New Democrats are fighting for a national, universal, public pharmacare program to make sure that all Canadians can access the prescription medicine they need with their health card, not their credit card – saving money and improving health outcomes for everyone.
Under our system, everyone should have access to quality health care no matter where they live. But too often, Canadians are getting different care depending on their province of residence – a problem made worse by a lack of federal leadership under successive Liberal and Conservative governments. New Democrats believe that the federal government has a critical role to play in upholding and enforcing the Canada Health Act, especially against the creeping threat of privatization and user fees. We will also act immediately to prevent the sale of blood products and to make sure that people can access abortion in all regions of the country.
A New Democrat government will work with the provinces and territories to tackle wait times and improve access to primary care across the country. We will identify coming gaps in health human resources and make a plan to recruit and retain the doctors, nurses, and other health professionals Canadians need.
Canada is a leader in innovative health research and we will work with universities and health professionals to make sure that public research on critical health issues continues to flourish. A New Democrat government will step up and regulate natural health products under stand-alone legislation.