Liberals to boost investments in health care, ensure all Canadians have family doctor

LIBERAL Leader Justin Trudeau on Monday said that a re-elected Liberal government will make sure every Canadian has access to a family doctor, to mental health services, to affordable prescription drugs, and to national pharmacare.

He noted that Canada’s health care system is a source of pride, but too many people still slip through the cracks. Today, nearly five million Canadians have no access to a family physician or a primary care team. All of us know someone who has gone through a mental health issue – but many people can’t get the help they need because it costs too much or the wait time is too long. And nearly one million Canadians skimp on food and heat to be able to pay for the medications they depend on, from insulin to inhalers.

“No one should go without the care they need because they don’t have access to a family doctor. And no one should have to give up food and heat to be able to pay for health care – whether it’s insulin, inhalers, or mental health support,” said Trudeau. “We’re going to close the gaps in the health care system, and make sure people can get the care they need, when they need it most.”

A re-elected Liberal government will make sure Canadians can afford and access lifesaving health care. It will improve people’s access to health care by:

  • ensuring that every Canadian can easily find a family doctor or primary care team;
  • setting clear national standards for access to mental health services so Canadians can get the support they need quickly, when they need it most; and
  • continuing to make home care and palliative care more available to those who need it.

It will make sure everyone can afford the medications they need by:

  • implementing Universal Pharmacare, so that all Canadians have the drug coverage they need at an affordable price;
  • establishing the Canada Drug Agency to make drug purchasing more effective and efficient, and implementing a national formulary with partners to set prices; and
  • bringing down the cost of lifesaving high-cost drugs for families through the Rare Disease Drug Strategy.

Trudeau said his government has made some of the most needed, significant changes to Canada’s health care system in decades. Over the past four years, it has:

  • helped more people access home care and mental health care through new health agreements with all the provinces and territories, allocating $11 billion in new funding;
  • undertaken the most comprehensive overhaul of drug pricing in thirty years, which will save Canadians approximately $13 billion over the next decade;
  • invested $500 million a year towards the creation of a rare disease drug strategy; and
  • taken the first steps to building a national pharmacare system.

“In the future, the federal government will have to negotiate with the provinces and territories, as has always been the case, to reach new health accords,” said Trudeau. “When that time comes, who do you want at the negotiation table, standing up to Doug Ford? Andrew Scheer, who follows his lead – or our Liberal team, who will fight for you?”

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