The Benefits of Allowing Business Back Into Canadian Health Care provides a review of the direction of health policy reforms in the rest of the world that indicates that Canadians are not alone in preferring balanced approaches to health policy reform. The consensus that is emerging internationally is primarily concerned with the following: ensuring universal access to a defined package of medically necessary services; maximizing consumer choice; controlling cost pressures on public budgets; and satisfying consumer demands for timely access to high-quality health care services.
There is a wide scope for competition and private sector involvement in the arrangement and provision of health care under this emerging set of public values. Health policy research identifies a number of benefits that would result from private, for-profit provision of medically necessary services and health insurance. These advantages include reduced waiting times and queuing for services, increased consumer choice, rationalized demand for medical services, reduced cost pressures on government budgets, better overall quality of medical care, and the elimination of the conflict of interest which occurs when governments regulate services that they themselves provide.