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Updated: Mar 9, 2021


  • Access to healthcare is based on the need rather than the affordability is the principle of the Canadian healthcare system.

  • The healthcare system in Canada is decentralised with the provisional and health insurance plans cover the services.

  • Services free of cost at the point of delivery

  • Canada has universal health insurance coverage.

  • Funding is provided by taxes

  • The co-payments made by the patients are quite less. Physicians get the payment based on the negotiation, and the budget is provided for the hospitals.

  • Medicare is the healthcare system in Canada.

  • There are ten provinces and two territories.


  • The provisional health plan is responsible for providing healthcare at the provisional level.

  • There is no out of pocket payments to the physicians.

  • Prescription drugs and dental coverage is covered by private insurance in Canadian healthcare.

  • Healthcare provider and insurer are directly involved in the exchange of the money. Ministry of health at the provisional level is responsible for regulating the prices.


70% of the healthcare expenditure funding is from the taxes. In the rest 30%, nearly half is out-of-pocket spending by the patients and the other half by the insurance companies.

The funding in Canada occurs at three layers

  • Layer 1: This includes public services including hospital, diagnostic, and physician services

  • Layer 2: This consists of public and private insurance coverage. Also contains out-of-pocket payment including outpatient prescription drugs, home care, and institutional long-term care

  • Layer 3: This includes completely private including the dental care, outpatient physiotherapy

Around 65% of the Canadian population have supplemental private insurance, which is used for the co-payment of outpatient prescription drugs. Some of the Canadian population do not have additional insurance; the majority of them are low-income Canadians.

Also read: Drug pricing and reimbursement in Netherlands



Health Canada is the regulatory body responsible for the authorization of drug products into the market. Health Canada releases the

Pricing and reimbursement: