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Canada Mulls New Healthcare Pact

OTTAWA, Aug. 22 (UPI) — Canada’s health minister says any deal on health transfers from the federal government to the provinces will hold the provinces accountable for spending.

The present healthcare agreement between the provinces and the federal government is set to end in 2014, Postmedia News reported Sunday.

“Although we are still in the planning stages, I can tell you that we will be working collaboratively with the provinces and territories to renew the accord, and there will be a clear emphasis on accountability,” federal Health Minister Leona Aglukkaq said.

The government is committed “to a universal, publicly funded” system, Aglukkaq said.

Federal health transfers would amount to $27 billion in 2011-2012 and rise to an “all-time high” of $30 billion in 2013-14, she said.

Her remarks came as recent polls showed increasing dissatisfaction among Canadians with the country’s healthcare system, the report said.

A survey by the Canadian Medical Association asked those polled if healthcare services had improved, stayed the same or worsened since the 2004 federal-provincial health accord was signed.

Almost half, 47 percent, said it had stayed the same, while 36 per cent said it had gotten worse.

Only 15 per cent said it had improved, Postmedia News reported.

UPI - United Press International, Inc.

Since 1907, United Press International (UPI) has been a leading provider of critical information to media outlets, businesses, governments and researchers worldwide.

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