Thursday, June 09, 2005

Top court strikes down Quebec private health-care law

Well, the Supreme Court has ruled that it the Quebec government cannot prevent people from buying private insurance for medical services covered under public medicare. But, I'm confused by this statement by the CBC (Top court strikes down Quebec private health-care law):

In its ruling Thursday, the court said the provincial policy violates the Quebec charter, but they ruled it does not violate the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, meaning there is no immediate impact on the Canadian health-care system as a whole.

Doesn't this have at least an impact on the perception of health care in Canada?

Follow my logic, and correct me where I'm wrong.

The Quebec ban on private care has been judged unconstitutional.

Similar (fictional) bans in other provinces, by precedent, would also be unconstitutional.

Therefore, anybody anywhere, can get private insurance to pay for publically covered medical services.

Further (from the Globe & Mail -
Quebec ban on private medical care struck down) :
"In sum, the prohibition on obtaining private health insurance is not constitutional where the public system fails to deliver reasonable services," the court found.
The public system is failing all over the place and there is no way to fix it. Firing more money down a dead end sewer is ridiculous.

Can we see that maybe now, is the time to think that private health-care, side-by-side with a fully funded public health-care system may not be such a bad thing?


ferrethouse said...

The key term here is "reasonable". It means that Liberals and judges are free to determine what "reasonable" means thereby denying private insurance by claiming that a 12 month wait for knee replacement is reasonable.

The status quo is maintained.

Paul said...

I'm not sure any of us will know what the ruling implications are, if any, for a long long time. In the mean time, more people will suffer.

Michael Fox said...

I can't wait for court challenges in other provinces - perhaps the more intelligent premiers will now have the bravery to call the Liberals' bluff and implement privat ehealth care in their provinces.