Claude Castonguay is known as “the father of Quebec Medicare.” However, as David Gratzer points out in IBD, Castonguay can be more accurately described as the “father” of the Canadian single-payer system:
Back in the 1960s, Castonguay chaired a Canadian government committee studying health reform and recommended that his home province of Quebec adopt government-administered health care … Castonguay’s work triggered a domino effect across the country, until eventually his ideas were implemented from coast to coast.
Now, however, Dad is not happy with the way his child turned out:
Four decades later, as the chairman of a government committee reviewing Quebec health care this year, Castonguay concluded that the system is in “crisis.”
And how does Castonguay propose to get Canadian health care back on track?
We are proposing to give a greater role to the private sector so that people can exercise freedom of choice.
That’s right. While our leading politicians advocate turning more and more of U.S. health care over to the government, the father of Canadian health care is advocating less government involvement. Which prompts Gratzer to ask:
If Claude Castonguay is abandoning ship, why should Americans bother climbing on board?