Opinion Polls

Healthcare in Canada 2020

The Montreal Economic Institute (MEI) commissioned Ipsos to poll Canadians on their opinions regarding various healthcare-related issues.

Related Content


Coronavirus has made health-care shortfalls ‘obvious’ to Canadians: poll (Global News, November 11, 2020)

Il faut débureaucratiser notre système de santé (Le Journal de Montréal, November 12, 2020)

Interview (in French) with Miguel Ouellette (Richard Martineau, QUB Radio, November 11, 2020)

Interview with Krystle Wittevrongel (Roy Green Show, Global News, November 14, 2020)

Interview (in French) with Michel Kelly-Gagnon (Ca$hMire, PierreCouture.ca, November 20, 2020)

Interview with Maria Lily Shaw (CTV News Montreal, CFCF-TV, November 23, 2020)


Media release – Poll: Canadians want to increase health system capacity

Montreal, November 10, 2020 – With Canadians locked down to varying degrees in order to keep hospitals from being overwhelmed, a very large majority of them want the system to have better surge capacity. Canadians, and especially Quebecers, also think that the health care system is too bureaucratic to respond to their needs. The majority of Canadians are in favour of giving more space to entrepreneurs within a universal health care system, according to an Ipsos poll carried out on behalf of the Montreal Economic Institute.

Some highlights:

  • 88% of Canadians agree that there’s a need to improve the capacity of the health care system, be it through more beds, personal protective equipment, medical staff, or hospitals and clinics. For those aged 55 and over, the figure is 93%.
  • 61% of Canadians believe that their health system is too bureaucratic to respond to the needs of the population. In Quebec, 75% of people agree with this statement. Fewer than one in four across the country disagree.
  • 63% of Canadians agree with entrepreneurs providing health care within the universal system. Quebecers are particularly open to this option: 75% of them are in favour.
  • 53% of Canadians think that the additional amounts of money injected into health care over the past decade have had no effect or that the system has actually gotten worse.
  • Nearly seven in ten Canadians (69%) want to continue to have access to telemedicine after the COVID-19 pandemic is over. This preference is even stronger among women (76%).

“Canadians realize that our health care system is constantly on the verge of being overwhelmed, and want there to be more capacity to deal with large volumes of patients. While the general public sympathizes with health professionals, Canadians find the system much too bureaucratic,” says Miguel Ouellette, Director of Operations and Economist at the MEI. “That may be part of the reason why people are so open to the idea of allowing entrepreneurs to lend a hand.”

“Canadians are ready to try something new to improve health care access. They know that spending more and more money within the current system is not solving the problem. We need to make a real effort to improve the capacity of our system to adapt to increased patient numbers, and bureaucracy can’t do it alone,” concludes Mr. Ouellette.

The web poll was conducted from October 26 to 28, 2020 among a representative sample of 1,150 Canadians aged 18 and over.

* * *

The Montreal Economic Institute is an independent public policy think tank. Through its publications, media appearances, and advisory services to policy-makers, the MEI stimulates public policy debate and reforms based on sound economics and entrepreneurship.


Interview requests: Maria Lily Shaw, Economist, MEI. Tel.: 514 273-0969 x 2230 / Cell. 450-522-6602 / Email: mlilyshaw@iedm.org

Back to top