Canada Health Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. C-6)

Act current to 2015-11-16 and last amended on 2012-06-29. Previous Versions


Marginal note:Primary objective of Canadian health care policy

 It is hereby declared that the primary objective of Canadian health care policy is to protect, promote and restore the physical and mental well-being of residents of Canada and to facilitate reasonable access to health services without financial or other barriers.

  • 1984, c. 6, s. 3.


Marginal note:Purpose of this Act

 The purpose of this Act is to establish criteria and conditions in respect of insured health services and extended health care services provided under provincial law that must be met before a full cash contribution may be made.

  • R.S., 1985, c. C-6, s. 4;
  • 1995, c. 17, s. 35.


Marginal note:Cash contribution

 Subject to this Act, as part of the Canada Health Transfer, a full cash contribution is payable by Canada to each province for each fiscal year.

  • R.S., 1985, c. C-6, s. 5;
  • 1995, c. 17, s. 36;
  • 2012, c. 19, s. 408.

 [Repealed, 1995, c. 17, s. 36]


Marginal note:Program criteria

 In order that a province may qualify for a full cash contribution referred to in section 5 for a fiscal year, the health care insurance plan of the province must, throughout the fiscal year, satisfy the criteria described in sections 8 to 12 respecting the following matters:

  • (a) public administration;

  • (b) comprehensiveness;

  • (c) universality;

  • (d) portability; and

  • (e) accessibility.

  • 1984, c. 6, s. 7.
Marginal note:Public administration
  •  (1) In order to satisfy the criterion respecting public administration,

    • (a) the health care insurance plan of a province must be administered and operated on a non-profit basis by a public authority appointed or designated by the government of the province;

    • (b) the public authority must be responsible to the provincial government for that administration and operation; and

    • (c) the public authority must be subject to audit of its accounts and financial transactions by such authority as is charged by law with the audit of the accounts of the province.

  • Marginal note:Designation of agency permitted

    (2) The criterion respecting public administration is not contravened by reason only that the public authority referred to in subsection (1) has the power to designate any agency

    • (a) to receive on its behalf any amounts payable under the provincial health care insurance plan; or

    • (b) to carry out on its behalf any responsibility in connection with the receipt or payment of accounts rendered for insured health services, if it is a condition of the designation that all those accounts are subject to assessment and approval by the public authority and that the public authority shall determine the amounts to be paid in respect thereof.

  • 1984, c. 6, s. 8.