Premiers Protecting Canada’s Health Care Systems


WINNIPEG, August 6, 2010 - Premiers remain focused on providing quality health care, including improving patient outcomes and the training and retaining of health care professionals. They also agreed on the need to work together to bring the growth of health care costs to a more sustainable level.

Premiers agree to establish a pan-canadian purchasing alliance to consolidate public sector procurement of common drugs and medical supplies and equipment, where appropriate. By capitalizing on their combined buying power, provinces and territories will achieve economies of scale where cost savings can be realized and redirected to the delivery of care to patients.

Premiers discussed innovative health care practices underway in each jurisdiction. Premiers directed their Health ministers to work with health care experts to share and collaborate on clinical practice guidelines, evidence-based standards, and best practices that can assist in ensuring that the most appropriate treatments are used to improve patient outcomes.

Premiers directed Health ministers to collaborate with Finance ministers on a critical path in the review of transfers, notably the Canada Health Transfer. Premiers agree that the federal government needs to remain a strong partner with provinces and territories in funding health care. They look forward to working toward the renewal of stable and predictable funding that will support Canada’s health care systems.

Supporting healthy living is also important to reducing burdens on the health care system. For example, reducing sodium intake could prevent up to 23,500 cardiovascular events annually, and generate close to $3 billion in health care savings. Premiers encouraged Canadians to reduce their personal sodium intake level to 1500 mg per day and urged the food industry to immediately implement voluntary measures recommended by the recent Sodium Working Group report.

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For more information:
Jay Branch

Director, Communications
Executive Council
Government of Manitoba
204-945-1494
Jay.Branch@leg.gov.mb.ca