Access to health care

Though in Canada health care is universally accessible, there is a difference between that which is Potential Access v Realizable Access (Bauer)

  • Potential Access – According to Bauer, potential access is access which is provided to citizens through legislation, and ideally accessible.
  • Realizable Access – According to Bauer, realizable access is access which is free from barriers, allowing for people to receive the health care they require. For example, finding a family physician in rural areas, visiting a physician without discrimination and having a physician understand your health and medical needs as a patient

Example: Within an Ontario context, some stages of medical transition are covered by Ontario Health insurance Plan (OHIP). This means that residents of the province will not require to pay for these support services out of pocket. However, given the very limited number of medical professionals and facilities equipped to offer these services, there are often challenges in access due to prolonged wait times and prohibitive travel costs for those living outside of major urban centres.

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