Digital Health Tools Must Remain a Core Part of Canada’s Post-pandemic Health Care Delivery System

Wednesday, January 19th, 2022

Doctors couldn’t access patient records, some systems were only available in facilities that were themselves not physically accessible, large data systems didn’t work, telemedicine networks didn’t scale. The health-care system itself hadn’t adequately planned for a pandemic! This broken system must end now… We can start with three: labs, drugs, and patient record summaries. 

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Hallway Medicine and Value-based Funding

Friday, January 25th, 2019

Fundamentally, the payment system is too complex and incoherent. This often creates perverse incentives and makes it difficult for policymakers to achieve desired outcomes… Value-based funding pays healthcare providers for outcomes, not for each siloed service individually… Competition based on value for money will allow the Ontario health system to do more with less.

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Federal health role is about more than money

Tuesday, January 10th, 2012

Jan. 10, 2012
… known long-term funding and is more than provinces could have reasonably expected from the 2014 first ministers’ meeting. The principle behind the federal generosity is clear. Prime Minister Stephen Harper is taking Ottawa out of the health-care debate and ending the national discussion of health and health-care system issues that began with the original federal funding in the 1966 Medical Care Act and continued up to the 2004 wait times accord. But is this a good thing for Canada?… There are at least seven areas that require national policy leadership and federal attention:

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A good start toward rational health-care billing

Wednesday, August 17th, 2011

Aug 15 2011
Why would the OMA quietly give back more than $8,000 per doctor? A few numbers may help to put this in context: Total clinical payments to Ontario physicians (from Canadian Institute for Health Information, CIHI): • 2004-05: $5.17 billion. • 2008-09: $7.48 billion. • Growth in four years: 44.7 per cent… Some of this is due to new doctors coming in — probably under 1 per cent… This money comes in three areas that simply were no longer publicly defensible…

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Overcharged for health care

Friday, August 5th, 2011

Aug 03 2011
The actual cost of many services and procedures has been spiralling downward — yet the amount provincial governments spend on health care has been spiralling upward. How can this be? …Health care is a high-tech industry and time-saving innovations that improve outcomes are being introduced all the time… Nevertheless, over the past decade, health-care spending has been climbing by about 7 per cent a year. Partly that’s because we do more of some things… But in other cases, it’s now clear that we are simply overpaying.

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Self-fulfilling prophets of health-care doom

Sunday, May 15th, 2011

May 15 2011
The political elites are engaged in a game of self-fulfilling prophecy. Straight-line cost projections and guaranteed federal revenue increases will ensure the cost increases they project. Canadians need government to bend the cost curve, not fund it. We need to figure out how we can shift gears and deliver more value for the tax dollars spent. We have successfully done so before and we can do so again… Fortunately, our challenge this decade is different. Then it was about fixing hospital care; now, we must harvest productivity gains from new technologies and virtualization of care.

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