Canadian legislatures and the regulation of the private healthcare industry

Prémont, M.-C.,  Verbauwhede, C., «Canadian legislatures and the regulation of the private healthcare industry», University of Toronto Law Journal, Volume 68 Issue 2, Spring 2018, p. 231-258.

This article discusses the three regulatory measures that Canadian provinces have used to implement the Canada Health Act criteria of universality, accessibility, and comprehensiveness. These three measures – the prohibition of duplicative private insurance, the prohibition of mixed private–public practice, and the capping of private physician fees to the levels of public fee schedules – are designed, above all, to regulate the health-care insurance and delivery industries. The article highlights the dangers of superficial analysis by the courts that is limited to canvassing potential violations of some patients’ individual rights, without taking into account the intricacies of health-care industry regulations and their effects on the public system as a whole. Without the vigilance of the courts, the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms can certainly become the industry’s best ally in forcing a radical realignment of public policy in health-care systems across the country, without democratic debate.