No rush to private health insurance

Employers leery of new private health costs
By Uyen Vu
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 07/10/2007

When the Supreme Court of Canada struck down a ban on private medical care last summer, insurance companies started looking at ways to step into the breach. But, so far, they haven’t found an insurance plan that’s viable.

Part of the problem is it’s too early and the law is still unsettled around the question of a two-tiered system. Plus, the services most likely to be delivered outside the public health system are too few and too specific to be offered in an insurance plan, said Tim Clarke, senior benefits consultant at the Toronto office of consulting firm Hewitt Associates.

“Looking down the road, if there are private clinics out there that offer a very broad range of services such that you can get faster treatment for any one of 100 different services, then there’s a potential for selling an insurance product around it. You’ve got people with different health-care needs buying it for different kinds of services,” said Clarke.