Policy, legal, and constitutional implications of Chaoulli v. Quebec
Johnson, Bart Morley
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The central objective of this study is to examine the policy, legal, and constitutional implications resulting from the Chaoulli v. Quebec (2005 1 S.C.R. 791) both for the rights of Canadians within the scope of the publicly funded healthcare system and the configuration of that system. In examining the policy implications the thesis focuses on Quebec’s Bill 33, Ralph Klein’s “Third Way” proposal, and the development of national wait time benchmarks. In examining the legal implications the thesis focuses on the so-called ‘copy-cat cases’ triggered by the Chaoulli case, namely Flora v. Ontario, Murray v. Alberta, and McCreith and Holmes v. Ontario. In examining the constitutional implications of Chaoulli the thesis focuses on the expansion of the interpretation of Section 7 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, and the elevation of timely access to healthcare to a Charter right. The study concludes with some observations regarding how Canada’s publicly funded healthcare system could evolve in the future and the role of the courts in the evolution of the system. It provides a warning that if appropriate and timely action is not taken by federal and provincial officials to minimize wait times in the publicly funded healthcare system, the implications of Chaoulli will continue to expand through future litigation and judicial decisions. One of the potential outcomes of such litigation and decisions is development of a two-tier or multi-tier healthcare system in Canada.
DegreeMaster of Arts (M.A.)
CommitteeMichelmann, Hans J.; Backman, Allen; Romanow, Roy