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News Release

User Fees Could Lead To
Two-tiered Medical System

March 31, 1983

The Medical Reform Group of Ontario, an organization of socially-concerned physicians and medical students, has expressed its support of the position taken by the Federal Minister of Health and Welfare, Monique Begin, regarding user fees and extra billing.

The MRG believes that health care is a right that must be guaranteed without financial or other deterrents. The MRG opposes any tendency away from unqualified universality wherein all residents are covered for insured services. Such restraints on accessibility erode the foundations of medicare.

In the opinion of the MRG, funding for health care should come from progressive forms of taxation. Extra billing should be abolished. Further, the MRG recommends that user fees and other privatization measures be abandoned.

Extra billing, in the view of the MRG, prohibits those who cannot pay from access to the services of non-participating physicians. User fees will result in those who are sick paying more than the well and utilization being determined by ability to pay rather than the need for services. This will lead to an unacceptable two-tiered health care system.

G. Howard Cash

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