The latest issue of CCPA's The Monitor makes the case for governments to increase their investments in social spending and features articles by partners in Get Well Canada.

Editorial: The social solution to Canada’s health care problem

Trish Hennessy, Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives

Did you know that 75% of the factors and influences that shape good health are unrelated to the medical care system? That’s why government investments in things like housing, child care and income supports are health investments.  

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Time to grow social and education spending – it’s key to good health

Paul Kershaw, Generation Squeeze and UBC School of Population and Public Health

Do you know the secret to good health?  Here’s a hint – it’s not what you eat, how much you exercise, or whether you have a doctor.  What matters most for health is the social conditions in which we are born, grow, live, work and age – but that’s precisely where Canada is underinvesting.

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Social and medical spending: Flip sides of the same coin

Bridget McCann, Dalhousie University

Do you know where governments can get the best bang for the buck to improve health?  All of the evidence points to investing in social supports.  That’s why Canadian governments need to monitor how much they spend on things like housing, poverty reduction, and child care relative to medical care.

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How can we influence budgets? Building power to change social structures

Jonathan Heller and Myrianne Richard, National Collaborating Centre for Determinants of Health

Did you know that health is influenced by the system and structures that surround us?  One example is government budgets, through which decisions are made about where and how much to invest across key health-related priorities. Documents like budgets are influenced by who has power to campaign effectively to advance their interests, and who tends to be marginalized from these processes.

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Addressing the fundamental causes of population health inequality

Daniel Dutton, Dalhousie University

Do you know that Canadians with more income, education, social capital (and so on) consistently have better health?  Improving population health requires increased social spending and improvements in the environments in which people live.  These social investments should be prioritized as investments in health, because relying on medical care is unnecessarily expensive, and saddles too many with unfair health burdens that could have been prevented.

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Three key health policy movements are aligning: Get Well Canada, well-being budgeting, and health-in-all-policies

Andrea Long, Generation Squeeze 

Did you know that Get Well Canada is riding the coattails of two global policy movements when it comes to securing the long-term health of Canadians?  One is well-being budgeting. The second is health-in-all-policies. Now we need governments to recognize that these health policy movements all identify the same ingredients for a solution – growing social spending more urgently than medical spending

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Healthy public policy requires working within and beyond the health care system

Sally McBride, Karen Rideout, Dr. Mark Lysyshyn, Craig Brown, Vancouver Coastal Health Authority

Did you know that the policy levers needed to support good health cut across the mandates of multiple government ministries?  That’s why shaping healthy public policy requires collaborative action to break down silos and facilitate action on shared priorities.

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Canada needs to move from individual choice approach to whole-of-society approach

Arman Hamidian, Santis Health

Did you know that promoting good health isn’t only the purview of government departments with this name?  Many policies and programs led by sectors outside of health are critical to supporting wellbeing and reducing health inequities.  That’s why we need all parts of government, and all sectors of society, to work together. 

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