QUEEN'S PARK – Wednesday, during question period, Official Opposition NDP Health Critic France Gélinas (Nickel Belt) questioned Premier Ford about the high rates Ontario is paying private clinics for procedures regularly done in hospitals.
"Yesterday CBC reported that privately-owned Don Mills Surgical Unit was paid rates ‘noticeably’ higher than what the province provides public hospitals for the same procedures. This government paid $1,200 for cataract surgeries to for-profit clinics versus $500 for the same surgery in a public hospital. Even worse, the Ford government paid $4000 for a meniscectomy in a for-profit clinic versus $1200 to our public hospitals.
Can the Premier explain to the people of this province why his government is willing to pay private for-profit clinics up to 333% more than what he pays our public hospitals for the same procedure?"
According to documents released after a freedom of information request, Health payments to the Don Mills Surgical Unit Ltd. increased from $1.32 million in 2019 to $5.27 million in 2022.
"Unlike public hospitals, which provide the care we require based on our needs, the number one goal of private clinics is to make a profit off the backs of sick patients," added Gélinas. "These clinics only accept the easiest of clients, sending the riskier, more complex, or "expensive" patients to public hospitals, yet public hospitals have better outcomes.
“The Ford Conservatives are making sure that Centric Health Corporation makes a lot of money off the backs of sick people at the expense of taxpayers. Centric Health Corporation is a division of Kensington Capital Partners whose stated goal is ‘to create top-performing investment solutions for our investors.’
“Why is this government paying 2 to 3 times the hospital price to a private for-profit clinic that aims to create not quality care but top-performing investment solutions for their investors?"
According to their website, Kensington Private Equity Fund acquired the surgical division of Centric Health Corporation and created a new entity called Clearpoint Health Network Inc. It was announced last week that former health minister Christine Elliott has registered to lobby the Ford government on behalf of Clearpoint.
You can watch the video HERE.
Patients in for- profit clinics paying more for less in Ford’s Ontario
Published on November 15, 2023