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Cambie Clinic

Health care privateer sues for right to bill more

In most high-profile Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms court cases, people are fighting to protect basic human rights that Canadians fought for, and all too often died for.

Then there’s the Charter challenge launched by Brian Day, a doctor who owns a number of private health clinics in BC. Day is claiming the Charter gives him the right to charge patients more than the rates set by British Columbia’s medicare system.

If the challenge succeeds, it could fatally undermine medicare and leave millions of Canadians struggling to afford healthcare, but Day and other health care privateers will be able to make money hand over fist at our expense.

The legal challenge was launched a month before the Medical Services Commission of British Columbia was due to audit Day’s clinics to see if patients and the medicare system were being overcharged.

Day claims he has nothing to hide, but he fought for 2 years to prevent the audit from taking place and then withheld, and even destroyed, some vital information.

In the end, the auditors were able to look at just 100 days’ worth of data from Day’s clinics -- and they found $491,654 in extra billing and $66,734 in double billing!

Still, Day is continuing with his Charter challenge. The legal fees may be adding up, but they’ll be just a drop in the bucket compared to the profits privateers expect -- at our expense -- if extra billing is allowed.