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Canadian premiers tell PM Justin Trudeau they won’t be sharing citizens’ medical data with federal government

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All 12 premiers in Canada have signed a joint letter saying that their territories and provinces will not be sharing healthcare data with the federal government. The federal government made sharing the data a requirement for its increased healthcare funding to provinces.

“In a joint letter to the Prime Minister, signed by all premiers, we pledged the following,” the letter states. “While enhanced broader data sharing will now be explored and undertaken, to reflect capacities and needs in each of our jurisdictions, individual personal health information cannot and will not be exchanged.”

We obtained a copy of the letter for you here.

Earlier this month, the federal government fulfilled provinces’ requests for more healthcare funding. However, it said a condition for that funding would be sharing of healthcare data. The requests came following a decrease in funding from 35% to 22% in recent years. However, under the constitution, 100% of healthcare costs fall under provincial governments.

There were concerns that the federal government would require the creation of a national healthcare digital ID system. Before the federal government announced the increased funding, Saskatchewan and Alberta’s premiers Scott Moe and Danielle Smith had announced that they would not participate in a federal national ID scheme. Now it seems all premiers are opposed to the idea, putting Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s plan to form a digital ID in partnership with the World Economic Forum at risk.

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