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Who are the BCHC and Canadian Doctors for Medicare interveners?

In front of the courthouseWe're on the case

BCHC and Canadian Doctors for Medicare are intervenors in the case. We will bring key evidence before the courts in defence of Canadians' access to health care based on need, not ability to pay.

The intervenor group includes two patients, two doctors, Canadian Doctors for Medicare, and the BC Health Coalition. The patients in the intervenor group --  one living with Limb-Girdle Muscular Dystrophy and other with AIDS -- represent those who stand to lose the most in this case. They are economically vulnerable people who rely on a high quality public health care system to provide life-sustaining care.

In addition, the physician members of the intervenor group are concerned that if the lawsuit successfully overturns the principle of Canadian health care - that care be based on need, not ability to pay- their patients’ health will suffer.

Go to the trial website for more details about our intervenor group.

Why are we intervening?

In 2005, there was a Supreme Court case in Quebec, where a doctor tried to strike down the law to allow people to buy private insurance for medically-necessary care, much like they do in the United States. The Supreme Court of Quebec ruled that in extreme cases of people waiting for care, they would allow it. The case then went to the Supreme Court of Canada, and resulted in a split decision - luckily, it didn't apply to the rest of the provinces.

The reason this case went so far was because there wasn't enough pro-Medicare evidence presented in the court at the provincial level. You can't bring new evidence into the case when you're appealing at the Supreme Court, so we know that we need to get involved now, at the BC Supreme Court.

We won't come that close to losing our health care system again. And there is even more at stake in the Cambie case.