Healthcare dominated the discussions Friday as the Western Canadian premiers met in Regina. This was the first time in two years the premiers had been able to all meet face-to-face.
Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe hosted his colleagues from British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba and the three territories. They got together to talk about more funding from the federal government to help meet the demands on the healthcare system that were put on it by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The big push from the premiers was to see the Canada Health Transfer from the federal government increase by $28 billion. This would see the federal government increase its share from 22 percent to 35 percent.
“What that means to Canadians, to people in Saskatchewan, British Columbia and across this nation, is that we will be able to ensure that existing services that we have are sustainable into the future,” Moe said during a press conference Friday morning.
A shortage of healthcare professionals was another concern, pointed out by B.C. Premier John Horgan during the press conference.
“We’re going to bring forward new initiatives on human resources development so we can have more care providers for the challenges of an aging population. Now is the time for a new vision for health care in Canada,” Horgan said.
Healthcare wasn’t the only topic on the table during the meeting, however. The premiers also talked about issues like internal trade, the supply chain, trade infrastructure and getting resources to market.