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View Gabriel Ste-Marie Profile
BQ (QC)
View Gabriel Ste-Marie Profile
2020-03-09 12:17 [p.1780]
Madam Speaker, I thank the parliamentary secretary for the comments and question.
This is a unique situation. It is often said that we can make numbers say what we want. The parliamentary secretary is correct to say that federal government health transfers to the provinces have never been so high. If we consider demographic growth and the increased cost of health services, the federal government has never contributed so little to health in terms of percentage of GDP or health spending. The provinces are having to take on more and more of our health care spending. We have to pay closer attention to the data.
I would remind my colleague that under the initial agreement, Ottawa was supposed to cover half of our health care spending. Ottawa was supposed to match every dollar spent by Quebec. The provinces and Quebec are currently asking the federal government to cover 25% of our health care spending. In other words, we are asking Ottawa to spend $1 for every $3 we spend and we are not even getting that. That is why Quebec's Liberal health minister called this predatory federalism.
Coronavirus presents a real threat. Everyone has to work together to limit the spread of this virus as much as possible, at least until there is a vaccine, which should arrive in a few months.
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