Thursday, November 09, 2006

A popular investment

An Environics poll confirms Jim Flaherty's epiphany that Canadians want to see their government provide effective health care, and are willing to pay more in taxes if it results in better investment in medical research:
In a recent survey by Environics Research Group, 91 per cent of respondents said they want more government funding for health and medical research. The poll was commissioned by Research Canada, an umbrella organization of health researchers and hospitals.

Of the 1,000 people surveyed, 69 per cent said they'd even be willing to pay a dollar per week out of their own pocket for increased research.

Jacques Hendlisz, Director-General of Douglas Hospital in Quebec and Director of Research Canada, said the survey confirms that health research must become a government priority.

"The size of the numbers surprised us," he said. "It's clear that Canadians favour (health research), and Canadians don't seem to mind spending money there."
Based on the poll numbers, it looks like a move toward further research would be both good politics and good policy for the Cons to invest more in health research. But it remains to be seen whether Flaherty will have retreated into his usual ideology by budget time rather than recognizing both the need and the support for added research funding.

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