Canadian health spending to hit $183B this year

A new report predicts Canada’s total health-care bill for 2009 will reach $183 billion — representing almost $5,000 for each man, woman and child in the country.

A new report predicts Canada’s total health-care bill for 2009 will reach $183 billion — representing almost $5,000 for each man, woman and child in the country.

The Canadian Institute for Health Information says health spending has risen since 2008 by more than five per cent — or an estimated $9.5 billion — before inflation.

Hospitals continue to account for the largest slice of Canada’s health-care spending pie at $51 billion.

The report says spending on prescription and over-the-counter drugs is predicted to reach $30 billion this year, while payments to doctors should total more than $26 billion.

Health-care spending varies across the country, with Alberta topping the list at just over $6,000 per resident and Quebec spending the least at under $5,000 per person.

The report says that over the last decade, the public-private split in health spending has remained relatively stable, with government contributing about 70 per cent and private providers about 30 per cent.

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