In Canada, a publicly financed health care system called Medicare provides comprehensive coverage for every Canadian citizen. Sometimes referred to as a single-payer system, the Canadian health care plan pays everyone’s medical bills using tax money from provincial and federal sources. Each individual province manages the delivery of health services to its citizens, but all of the various provincial and territorial health insurance systems are linked through adherence to the Canada Health Act, a set of health care standards set at the federal level. The federal government also directs a variety of initiatives to prevent disease and to promote health.

Canadians may also purchase private health insurance to supplement the government plans. However, private health insurance in Canada is restricted from offering coverage for services already provided by provincial health plans. Despite these limitations in coverage, increased restrictions of Medicare have led many Canadians to obtain private health insurance.

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