A bad economy means poor health, according to a new survey of Canadians released today by the Canadian Medical Association. The national report card on health care surveyed slightly more than 1,000 Canadians – and made front page news in The Globe and Mail. The survey confirms research by the Wellesley Institute, including Poverty Is Making Us Sick (the most comprehensive, current review of health and income data)and Sick And Tired of Being Sick and Tired (a review of the health status of lower-income Ontarians).
The links between income and health have been set out in numerous reports at the international level (including Closing the Gap in a Generation – from the World Health Organization), nationally (including the latest annual report from Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer), and in Toronto (including Toronto Public Health’s The Unequal City).
The CMA survey indicates that the Canadian public understands that we urgently need a comprehensive national strategy to reduce health inequalities (higher rates of disease and premature death between richer and poorer people, and other differences in health among our population).