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Health care: 70% of Quebecers favour a role for the private sector within a universal system

Montreal, September 5, 2018 – With the election campaign in full swing, a Leger poll conducted for the MEI shows that Quebecers are largely in favour of having private entrepreneurs enhance the provision of health care, as long as this care continues to be covered by government. A majority also say they are dissatisfied with their health care system and believe the billions of dollars injected into health care over the past 10 years have not produced good results.


  • 70% of Quebecers agree that private entrepreneurs should be able to offer more health services, as long as the government covers the costs.
  • 58% of Quebecers are dissatisfied with the health care system, and only 39% are satisfied with it.
  • Only 22% of Quebecers believe the additional health care spending over the past 10 years has produced good results.
  • 42% of Quebecers are in favour of entrusting the management of public hospitals to private companies, while 44% are opposed.

Full poll results are available on the MEI website.

“The results of this poll are clear: Quebecers are willing to have the private sector play a larger role in the provision of health care without calling into question the system’s universal nature, rather than continue to throw money at the problem,” states Germain Belzile, Senior Associate Researcher at the MEI.

Dissatisfaction with the health care system is highest among respondents aged 35 to 54 (64% are dissatisfied). And more than two-thirds of those aged 35 and over find that the additional amounts the Quebec government has injected into health care over the past 10 years have not produced good results.

“Quebecers’ support for entrepreneurship within a universal health care system is no surprise,” says Patrick Déry, Public Policy Analyst at the MEI. “That’s how it’s done almost everywhere in Europe, where access to health care is better than here. Election candidates, who are outdoing each other with all sorts of promises, should take note.”

The Web survey was conducted from August 24 to 27, 2018, among a representative sample of 1,034 Quebecers aged 18 and over.

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The Montreal Economic Institute is an independent, non-partisan, not-for-profit research and educational organization. Through its studies and its conferences, the MEI stimulates debate on public policies in Quebec and across Canada by proposing wealth-creating reforms based on market mechanisms.


Interview requests: Daniel Dufort, Director, External Relations, MEI. Tel.: 514-273-0969 ext. 2224 / Cell: 438-886-9919 / E-mail: ddufort@iedm.org

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