Conference Board launches alliance for sustainable health care

Practices within organizations to be examined

The Conference Board of Canada has launched the Canadian Alliance for Sustainable Health Care, a five-year initiative that seeks to improve the Canadian health system as a whole — as well as health-care practices within firms and organizations.

"The sustainability of the health-care system is a priority for Canadian governments and for many organizations in both the private and public sectors," said Anne Golden, president and CEO of the Conference Board of Canada. "Most Canadians understand that our public health-care system is facing severe fiscal challenges and that reform is needed so that it will be effective, efficient, fair and sustainable going forward."

The work of the alliance will help Canadians to better understand the conditions for a sustainable health-care system, including:

•Financial sustainability: current and future health-care spending, fiscal balances and public and private investment and expenditures.

•Firm-level performance: The relationship among health-related costs, workforce health and firm performance.

•Institutional factors: Ways in which the health-care system can be improved while addressing quality of care.

To launch this initiative, the Conference Board will assess the fiscal sustainability of the publicly funded health-care system nationally as well as by province and territory. Further research will include analysis of financial pressures and reform options in the health-care system to identify implications and enable discussion of policy options, said The Conference Board of Canada in a release.

To date, alliance partners include CML Healthcare, the Cooperators Group, IBM Canada, Loblaw Companies, Mercer (Canada), Scotiabank, TD Financial Group and the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board of Ontario. And alliance participants include the Canadian Association for Retired Persons, Canada's Research-Based Pharmaceutical Companies, the Credit Valley Hospital & Trillium Health Centre and the Hospital for Sick Children.

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