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Canadians are becoming increasingly disillusioned with their provincial healthcare system and are open to alternative and even privatized options, according to a recent poll.

An Ipsos poll conducted on behalf of the Montreal Economic Institute found that Canadians are unhappy with how provincial governments have handled healthcare policy and are showing increased support for alternative healthcare models. 

When asked to rate satisfaction with their provincial healthcare system, 50% of Canadians indicated they were dissatisfied. Atlantic Canadians are the most unhappy with their healthcare systems as 67% indicated their disapproval.

As for the expenditure of additional taxpayer dollars on provincial healthcare systems in the past ten years, 67% of Canadians said that these funds had no effect or worsened the healthcare system. 

Furthermore, 78% of Canadians said that the healthcare system is too bureaucratic, and 58% agreed that the rate of spending on healthcare is unsustainable. 

Canadians have become increasingly dissatisfied with provincial healthcare systems as waiting times have rapidly risen in correspondence with rapidly rising healthcare expenditures. 

Between 1997-2023, the cost of public healthcare insurance for the average Canadian family has exploded, increasing by 234%.

However, Canadians have been seeing the quality of the healthcare system decay, as indicated by the wait times to see specialists and receive treatment exponentially rising

The poll also finds that Canadians are open to exploring alternative healthcare delivery systems, including the expansion of for-profit providers.

70% of respondents said they believe that private entrepreneurs can deliver healthcare services faster and more efficiently than hospitals managed by the government, while only 15% disagreed.

Quebecers and British Columbians were most inclined to view private entrepreneurs favorably, with 77% and 76% support respectively. 

Even though 83% of Canadians indicated that they were unfamiliar with the French and Swedish healthcare systems, 65% agreed that Canada should emulate these healthcare systems.

Sweden and France both have high-performing healthcare systems in which both private and public healthcare options are available to the public. 

In 2023, Premier Doug Ford announced a plan to allow more privately run healthcare clinics to perform surgeries to clear Ontario’s extensive surgery backlog.