Federal Minister of Health – Mandate Letter from PM Trudeau

Health Minster Jane Philpott with her husband, Pep, and two daughters, Bethany and Lydia.

In keeping with his promise to make government more accountable and transparent, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has shared his Ministers’ Mandate Letters with the public. The following is an excerpt from his letter to the Minister of Health:

As Minister of Health, your overarching goal will be to strengthen our publicly-funded universal health care system and ensure that it adapts to new challenges. Healthcare across Canada is changing at a rapid pace to keep up with the changing needs of an aging population and advances in health technology. The federal government must be an essential partner in improving outcomes and quality of care for Canadians. I expect you to work with provincial and territorial governments to support them in their efforts to make home care more available, prescription drugs more affordable, and mental health care more accessible. When Canadians are in good physical and mental health, they are able to work better, be more productive, and contribute more fully to our economy while living healthier, happier lives. Our health care system provides Canadians with peace of mind, but we need to make the investments necessary to ensure it can continue to evolve and innovate. 

In particular, I will expect you to work with your colleagues and through established legislative, regulatory, and Cabinet processes to deliver on your top priorities:

To read more click on the following link:


  • Engage provinces and territories in the development of a new multi-year Health Accord.  This accord should include a long term funding agreement. It should also:
    • support the delivery of more and better home care services. This includes more access to high quality in-home caregivers, financial supports for family care, and, when necessary, palliative care;
    • advance pan-Canadian collaboration on health innovation to encourage the adoption of new digital health technology to improve access, increase efficiency and improve outcomes for patients;
    • improve access to necessary prescription medications.  This will include joining with provincial and territorial governments to buy drugs in bulk, reducing the cost Canadian governments pay for these drugs, making them more affordable for Canadians, and exploring the need for a national formulary; and
    • make high quality mental health services more available to Canadians who need them.
  • Promote public health by:  increasing vaccination rates; introducing new restrictions on the commercial marketing of unhealthy food and beverages to children, similar to those now in place in Quebec; bringing in tougher regulations to eliminate trans fats and to reduce salt in processed foods, similar to those in the United States; and improving food labels to give more information on added sugars and artificial dyes in processed foods.
  • Work with the Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities in increasing funding to the Public Health Agency of Canada to support a national strategy to raise awareness for parents, coaches, and athletes on concussion treatment.
  • Introduce plain packaging requirements for tobacco products, similar to those in Australia and the United Kingdom.
  • Support the Ministers of Justice and Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness on efforts that will lead to the legalization and regulation of marijuana.
  • Work with the Minister of Indigenous and Northern Affairs to update and expand the Nutrition North program, in consultation with Northern communities.

– The full letter is available at: http://pm.gc.ca/eng/minister-health-mandate-letter#sthash.nxZkBIhJ.dpuf


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