MHLTC News Release Header

Ontario Investing More Than $50 Billion In Health Care

2016 Budget Includes $1 Billion Increase to Health Care Funding

April 1, 2016

As part of the 2016 Budget, the province is continuing to make greater investment in Ontario's health care system to give people faster access to the right care, now and in the future. In 2016-17, the government would be investing $51.8 billion in health care.

Highlights include:

  • Investing more than $345 million in all publicly-funded hospitals, including a one per cent increase to global base funding.
  • Creating more integrated, team-based primary care with an additional $85 million over three years to recruit and retain qualified primary care staff.
  • An additional $130 million in cancer care services, over the next three years, allowing for the delivery of more services and preventive programs.
  • Increasing funding by $250 million to expand capacity to deliver high-quality home and community care.
  • Making the shingles vaccine free for eligible seniors aged 65 to 70, saving them about $170 in out-of-pocket expenses.
  • As part of the 10-year Mental Health and Addictions Strategy, investing an additional $4 million for 248 new supportive housing units.
  • Investing an additional $75 million in community-based hospices and palliative care, for a total investment of about $155 million over three years.
  • Increasing annual funding for Behavioural Supports Ontario by $10 million, building on base funding of $44 million and other substantial increases the government has made in long- term care homes since 2003/04.
  • Keeping Ontarians healthy by using $5 million of increased revenues from new tobacco tax to support investments to enhance priority populations’ access to smoking cessation services.

Through recent actions to transform health care, the Province has increased patients’ access to primary care, provided more care for people at home, and reduced wait times for surgeries, diagnostic procedures and emergency department care. Ontario is also committing to helping patients have better access to a wider range of vaccines, such as travel vaccines, at pharmacies.

Increased investment in health care is part of the government's plan to build a better Ontario through its Patients First: Action Plan for Health Care, which provides patients with faster access to the right care; better home and community care; the information they need to live healthy; and a health care system that is sustainable for generations to come.


“With this new and important funding, we are working to ensure that patients have faster access to the right care, now and in the future. Making these necessary investments in our health care system is part of our commitment to put patients first by ensuring they get the high-quality health care they need – when they need it.” —  Dr. Eric Hoskins, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care

“The province’s economic plan supports strong public services in communities across Ontario. The plan reinforces one of the most important provincial services on which Ontarians rely – health care. The 2016 Budget supports continued commitments to increase patients’ access to primary care, to provide more care for people at or close to home and to help all Ontario families continue to receive quality health care.” —  Charles Sousa, Minister of Finance

“Ontario’s health care investments in Cambridge are a true testament to our government’s commitment to building strong, vibrant communities that live well. Our government continues to work closely with community health care partners to ensure that the investments being made match the priorities here in Cambridge.” —    Kathryn McGarry, Member of Provincial Parliament, Cambridge

“Investment in health care is an investment in the future. A strong, accessible and integrated health care system strengthens and builds communities by attracting talent, families and business. Speaking to Cambridge, North Dumfries and the Region of Waterloo, the benefits of these investments, including the expansion of Cambridge Memorial Hospital, will resonate for decades to come.” —    Patrick Gaskin, President and CEO Cambridge Memorial Hospital

“The Ontario Pharmacists Association supports the Ontario government’s commitment to giving patients more options for care closer to home by making a wider range of vaccines available through pharmacies. Pharmacists play a significant role in delivering front-line health care in their communities, and their unique relationship with patients makes them well-placed to provide even more care in a way that is accessible and convenient for many in their communities.” —    Dennis Darby, CEO, Ontario Pharmacists Association


  • The Cambridge Memorial Hospital project is currently under construction, including the redevelopment of up to 197 inpatient beds (which includes up to 52 new beds) and involves both renovation and new construction.
  • The government has invested almost $2 billion to significantly reduce wait times since 2003–04.
  • Health care funding has increased from $29.2 billion in 2003/2004 to $50.8 billion in 2015/16.
  • Hospital funding in Ontario has increased more than 50 per cent, from $11.3 billion in 2003- 04 to $17.4 billion in 2016-17.


2016 Ontario Budget

Patients First: Action Plan for Health Care

 For public inquiries call ServiceOntario, INFOline at 1-866-532-3161 (Toll-free in Ontario only)            

Media Contacts:

Shae Greenfield, Minister’s Office, 416-325-5230 
David Jensen, Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care 416-314-6197