Friday, November 23, 2007

B.C. Lawsuit Challenges Canadian Health Care System

The Globe and Mail reports on yet another lawsuit financed by the apparently deep pockets of Rick Baker, president of Timely Medical Alternatives, challenging Canada's universal health care system.

Those behind this B.C. court action and other, similarly funded cases throughout Canada seek to leverage these lawsuits to "open the door to more private health care in Canada."

From The Globe report:

The lawsuit, if it goes ahead, may be financed by the Canadian Constitution Foundation, which has been speaking with Mr. Baker. "We're strongly interested," said foundation executive director John Carpay, but added that interest is "subject to finding the appropriate lawyer to take on the case."

The foundation is financing similar cases in Ontario and Alberta. The Ontario lawsuit is in the name of Lindsay McCreith, who was also a client of Mr. Baker at Timely Medical Alternatives. Mr. Carpay expects these cases will not come to court until 2008 at the earliest.

If any of these suits is successful, it could open the door to more private health care in Canada.

"All it's going to take is in one of these suits, for the plaintiff to prevail," Mr. Baker said. "And I think the Canada Health Act will come tumbling down. It cannot be shown to be supported by the Charter of Rights."

We've previously discussed these Court challenges and their backers' ties to American conservatives alligned with the U.S. health insurance industry.

- Garry J. Wise, Toronto

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