Right-wing government officials are aware that the vast majority of Canadians view public health care as a sacred cow that is not to be messed with. However, this doesn’t prevent them from making every effort to gradually whittle away public health-care benefits. Since each province decides which procedures are “medically necessary,” there is considerable discrepancy in the extent of coverage between provinces.
Like Albertans, but unlike most Canadians, British Columbians pay premiums for health care. Since health care is something that everyone uses, let's call premiums what they really are: user fees on Medicare. There is a tantalizing logic behind user fees on Medicare. Since everyone requires health care at some point, everyone should have to chip in to help pay for it. And what could be more egalitarian than asking everyone to pay the same amount (in BC, $54 a month or $648 a year)? After all, in the doctor's office we are all equal. There are no barriers of race, education or class that sickness cannot cross. If we all use health care equally, why shouldn't we have to pay for it equally?