Canada overwhelmingly supports public health care | National Union of Public and General Employees

Canada overwhelmingly supports public health care

Nanos Research poll on eve of CMA convention shows that 86% of Canadians support "public solutions" to make public health care stronger.

Ottawa (13 Aug. 2009) - A new poll on the eve of the national convention of the Canadian Medical Association (CMA) in Saskatoon shows an overwhelming 86% level of public support for "public solutions" to improve Canada's national health care system.

Commissioned by the Canadian Health Coalition (CHC), and conducted by Nanos Research, the poll counters a national survey on privatization that the CMA is expected to release later in the week as doctors debate measures to increase the level of for-profit medicine in Canada.

Medicare vs. Privatization - Privatized, For-Profit Health Care: Pay More and Get Less

The coalition says it was necessary to carry out the poll because the CMA poll has been manipulated by "vague and misleading" language to produce results showing a misleading level of support for privatized medicine.

"With more than eight in 10 Canadians supporting public solutions to make public health care stronger, there is compelling evidence that Canadians across all demographics would prefer a public over a for-profit health care system," says Nik Nanos, president of Nanos Research.

Nanos, one of Canada's most respected pollsters, surveyed 1,001 Canadians between April 25 and May 3. His poll has a margin of accuracy of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

Direct question

Respondents to the CHC poll were asked the following question:

“Thinking about the future of Canada's public health-care system, would you support, somewhat support, somewhat oppose or oppose public solutions to make our public health care stronger?”

A total of 86.2% of respondents said they support or somewhat support public solutions, while 8.2% said they oppose or somewhat oppose the approach. The balance, 5.7%, said they were unsure.

The results are also in sync with a recent health Canada report entitled Healthy Canadians – A Federal Report on Comparable Health Indicators 2008. It found that 85.2% of Canadians were “very satisfied” or “somewhat satisfied” with health care services overall. That level was unchanged from 2005, the last time the survey was conducted.


The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 340,000 members. Our mission is to improve the lives of working families and to build a stronger Canada by ensuring our common wealth is used for the common good. NUPGE

More information:

Occupational Groups: