The study released today by the Parkland Institute confirms what many people working in the public health care system instinctively knew: that private health care delivery costs more and is less stable than properly funded and delivered public health care, said AUPE President Guy Smith.

“The Parkland Institute’s study dispels the myth that it doesn’t matter who delivers health care services,” said Smith. “It’s clear from the study that procedures cost more at the private providers, and that reductions in wait times were in spite of, not because of, the use of private health care providers.”

The study examined the case of Calgary’s Health Resource Centre (HRC), the private health clinic that went into receivership and cost Alberta taxpayers millions, as well as the Alberta Hip and Knee Replacement Project, a wait-list reduction project that included both for-profit and not-for-profit providers. The study’s conclusions were consistent with international studies, which have found that for-profit private health care is risky, costly, and lacks accountability.

“Albertans have said time and again that they do not want private health care,” said Smith. “It is baffling why this discussion continues to happen every election. Clearly, some political parties are not listening to Albertans, and that is something for voters to keep in mind come Apr. 23.”