Atlantic provinces sign on to bilateral health-care funding deals with Ottawa

HALIFAX — The Nova Scotia government confirmed today it has signed a bilateral health-care deal with Ottawa worth an additional $1 billion over the next 10 years.

The province issued a statement saying the money will be used to improve Nova Scotians' access to primary and mental health care, support health-care workers and adopt new technology.

The funding is part of a $198.6-billion investment by the federal government to improve health-care services for Canadians, including $46.2 billion in new funding announced earlier this month.

Earlier in the day, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was in Halifax, where he announced bilateral deals had been reached with all four Atlantic provinces and Ontario.

Prince Edward Island's deal is worth $996 million, including $288 million in a one-on-one agreement.

Nova Scotia Premier Tim Houston says the agreement in principle will help residents receive health services, no matter where they live.

He says the money will also be used to improve electronic health records and increase access to mental health and addictions services.

Nova Scotia Health Minister Michelle Thompson issued a statement saying Nova Scotians need more care, faster.

"Nova Scotians deserve a health-care system that is there for them when they need it," she said. "That means more people working in the system, more ways to get care, and the technology to help our busy health-care teams. We look forward to working with our federal partners toward these shared goals."

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 23, 2023.

The Canadian Press