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[Comment] Canada and global health: accelerate leadership now

Canada’s celebration in 2017 of 150 years as a nation is a ripe time for reflection on both its own universal health system and the country’s global commitments towards universal health coverage (UHC) as articulated in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).1,2 The recognition in the prairie province of Saskatchewan that farmers should not have to sell the farm to pay for their family’s health care was the principled pivot point that triggered Canada’s march towards UHC in the 1960s. Although it took nearly a century for the Canadian confederation, established in 1867, to achieve UHC, over these past 50 years, from a global perspective, Canada’s universal health-care system is viewed as being among the world’s best.