Negative Impact of Healthcare and Health System Privatization in Ontario

Negative Impact of Healthcare and Health System Privatization in Ontario

I wrote this a few days ago, or maybe even last week, when the Ontario government was going a bit crazy.

However, I got caught up dealing with other things for my personal and professional lives, which is why I have only had a chance to post this now. Apologies for that.


As the day winds down, and I finish reading medical policy briefs for work — I wanted to put down my own thoughts on today’s big news regarding Ontario and the shift in the way the wind blows for the healthcare of the people of Ontario… So here we go!

Significant shifts have taken place within the Ontario health care system as a direct result of the leadership of Premier Doug Ford and his cabinet. The growing trend toward the privatization of healthcare facilities and services has been one of the most contentious shifts in recent history. Concerns have been made concerning the possible adverse effects that this move toward privatization may have on the availability, affordability, and quality of healthcare for Ontarians as a result of these actions.

The creation of a two-tiered healthcare system, in which those who have the financial means to pay for private services are able to receive superior care compared to those who rely on the public system, is one of the most significant worries raised by the privatization of clinics and healthcare services.  This could result in an even greater disparity in health outcomes between the wealthy and the poor, as well as further strain on a public healthcare system that is already operating under extreme stress.

A further cause for concern is the possibility that patient care will take a back seat to profit-seeking at private clinics. (looking at you dear old neighbors to the south ;) ) This might result in an increased emphasis being placed on the provision of treatments that generate a higher revenue, such as elective surgeries, at the expense of services that are considered vital, such as primary care and mental health services. This could also result in lengthier wait times for services provided by non-profit organizations and restricted access to care for individuals who do not have the financial means to pay for services provided by private organizations.

In addition, private medical practices are not held to the same standards of supervision and regulation as public hospitals and other types of healthcare institutions. Because of this, there is likely to be less accountability for the quality and safety of the care that is provided, as well as less openness regarding the prices of treatments and the results of those services.

In general, the privatization of healthcare clinics and services in Ontario has the potential to negatively impact the accessibility, price, and overall quality of medical treatment available to Ontarians. It is imperative that the government do a comprehensive analysis of the effects of these changes and take measures to offset any adverse effects that may be caused by them.