EDMONTON, May 23, 2013 /CNW/ - British Columbia, Alberta and Ontario
have followed distinct paths to earn "A" grades in overall health
performance, according to The Conference Board of Canada's Paving the Road to Higher Performance: Benchmarking Provincial Health
British Columbia earns an overall "A" grade on the strength of having
the healthiest population in Canada. Ontario gets strong results in the
performance of its health care system despite - on a per person basis -
allocating fewer resources than other provinces. Alberta gets an "A"
grade in part due to significant spending on health care - almost
$1,000 per capita more than either B.C. or Ontario.
"No province achieves high grades in all of the categories assessed,
such as the health status of provincial populations and performance of
health systems," said Gabriela Prada, Director, Health Innovation,
Policy and Evaluation.
"Our analysis is not meant to 'shame and blame' provinces that do
relatively poorly on any given indicator," said Prada. "Our intention
is to identify performance achievements and gaps so that all provinces
are better equipped to make decisions that will improve health care
systems and population health."
Knowing how health systems perform now, is the first step to improving
Spending more dollars on health care does not necessarily lead to better
performance - it is how money is spent, not how much, that will produce
better health outcomes.
Provinces whose populations rank well in lifestyle factors - such as low
rates of smoking, obesity, and heavy drinking, and high levels of
physical activity - also do better in the overall health status of
Although Nova Scotia and New Brunswick achieve overall "B" grades, they
get high marks on the performance of their health care systems. Quebec
also gets a "B" grade overall - it has more health care resources per
capita than the majority of the provinces, although it gets lower
grades on the performance of its system.
Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland and
Labrador get "D" overall grades.
The overall findings were revealed at The Conference Board of Canada's Western Summit on Sustainable Health in Edmonton. The analysis was produced for the Conference Board's Canadian Alliance for Sustainable Health Care. In all, 90 indicators were assessed in the categories of Lifestyle
Factors (five), Health Status (30), Health Resources (eight), and
Health Care System Performance (47), leading to an overall grade.
From this comprehensive analysis, some general conclusions can be
Provinces that rank higher in Lifestyle Factors also perform better in
overall Health Status - this highlights the importance of health
promotion and disease prevention programs to control demand for health
Provinces with a higher percentage of their population living in rural
areas are more likely to have more health resources per capita. They
are also more likely to rank poorly on Lifestyle Factors and Health
Good performance can be achieved at various levels of spending - Alberta
and B.C. both achieve overall "A" grades, but B.C. spends about $3,700
per person while Alberta spends about $4,600 on health care services.
Provinces with a higher proportion of Aboriginal people in the overall
population (Saskatchewan and Manitoba) achieve poor rankings in
Lifestyle Factors, and score at the bottom in Health Status.
The Conference Board of Canada benchmarks performance using an A-B-C-D
report card ranking methodology. Grade levels are assigned to the
indicators using the following method:
For each indicator, the difference between the top and bottom performer
is calculated and this figure is divided by 4.
A province receives a report card rating of "A" on a given indicator if
its score is in the top quartile, a "B" if its score is in the second
quartile, a "C" if its score is in the third quartile, and a "D" if its
score is in the bottom quartile.
This methodology helps to ensure that those regions awarded an "A" on a
given indicator perform substantially better than the range of
performances among the other regions.
Launched in 2011, the Canadian Alliance for Sustainable Health Care is a five-year Conference Board program of research and dialogue. It
will delve deeply into facets of Canada's health care challenge,
including the financial, workplace, and institutional dimensions, in an
effort to develop forward-looking qualitative and quantitative analysis
and solutions to make the system more sustainable.
SOURCE: Conference Board of Canada
For further information:
Brent Dowdall, Media Relations, Tel.: 613- 526-3090 ext. 448