A new Ipsos poll shows less than half of Canadians are pleased with their provincial health care system and the majority believe private entities can provide faster services.
The growing unhappiness with Canada’s health care system became apparent over the pandemic when hospitals saw an increase in healthcare professional burnout and mass exodus across the country.
The issues with publicly funded health care moved the perception of private companies running services more positively, with more believing they can provide faster services compared to public institutions, the Ipsos survey shows
The study, conducted for the Montreal Economic Institute by the survey agency, shows 48 per cent of Canadians are not pleased with the country’s health care system. The poll was published April 6, 2023.
The results were lower among women (43 per cent) and residents of Atlantic Canada (25 per cent), as well as among residents of Saskatchewan and Manitoba (34 per cent).
Ipsos conducted the poll between March 17 and 20, and spoke to 1,164 Canadians aged 18 and older.
Similar to previous polls, four in 10 people (38 per cent) believe health care investments made in the last decade have had no impact on the system. About 30 per cent believe the health care system has actually deteriorated over the same period of time.
Doubt in the system is higher among the Atlantic provinces (46 per cent) compared to B.C. (24 per cent), Alberta (30 per cent), Saskatchewan and Manitoba (38 per cent), Ontario (31 per cent) and Quebec (24 per cent).
Provinces on the east coast have struggled to retain professionals and manage public health care over the last few years. The crisis compounded with the burnout of physicians and nurses, and in some instances, has resulted in people not getting the care they need.
P.E.I.'s government said in February hundreds of staff and $100 million is needed to positively impact the province’s health care system.
A majority of Canadians (67 per cent) believe private entities are able to provide health care services faster than publicly funded institutions.