Madam Speaker, I want to know if my colleague agrees that health transfers need to be increased. It seems like everyone in the House thinks so, but we cannot seem to agree. Promises are made and broken.
From 1958 to 1977, the federal government covered 50% of health care costs. From 1977 to 2004 there was no minimum. It was decided that funding would be left at the federal government's discretion. In 2004, former prime minister Paul Martin decided there needed to be a minimum, a floor that he set at a 6% annual increase. That was in effect from 2004 to 2017. Since 2017, the increase has been tied to the growth rate of GDP and subject to a floor of 3%.
In 2012, the Parliamentary Budget Officer said that the federal government was nearly driving the provinces into bankruptcy. He said that the government was not taking into account the aging population. According to him, Ottawa was ensuring its own long-term financial viability while jeopardizing that of the provinces.
I would like to know what my colleague thinks of that. Are we in a situation where the federal government is impoverishing the provinces?