One half support Ontario’s doctors in fee dispute

| Filed under: Ontario, Social Issues

One half support Ontario’s doctors in fee dispute

Nevertheless, high billings seen to be unacceptable

TORONTO April 28th, 2016 - In a random sampling of public opinion taken by the Forum Poll™ among 1157 Ontario voters, one half support Ontario’s doctors in their fee dispute with the provincial government (49%), while about one half this proportion support the provincial government (22%). More than a tenth support neither in the dispute (13%) and just more have no opinion (17%).

Supporting the doctors is especially characteristic of the oldest (56%), the wealthiest ($100K to $250K - 53%), in southwestern Ontario (54%), among Progressive Conservatives (66%) but not among Liberals (32%). Supporting the province in this dispute is common to the mid aged (45 to 54 - 26%), males (26%), the very wealthiest ($100K to $250K - 29%), in downtown Toronto (28%), among Liberal voters (34%), and the best educated (post grad - 29%).

Voters see high billings as excessive

Despite support for the doctors in their dispute with the province, an identical proportion of voters think the fact that 500 doctors billed a million dollars or more is "too much” (49%) in the context of what a doctor should earn in Ontario. For one quarter, a million dollars is “about the right amount” (27%), while just one twentieth think it’s “too little” (6%). The wealthiest are the most likely to see an annual salary of $1 million as “about right” ($80K to $250K - 31%).

When voters are presented with the single eye doctor who billed more than $6 million, as many as two thirds ay this is too much (68%), while just one tenth think it is about right or too little (10% each). A similar proportion has no opinion (13%). Once again, the wealthiest are the most likely to see this amount as “about right”.

It is not surprising Ontarians side with their doctors; these professionals have an extremely bully pulpit from which to build support for their fee dispute. In the meantime, the provincial government is not at its most popular, and may not have the reservoir of goodwill necessary to build support against a groups as well funded as the OMA," said Forum Research President, Dr. Lorne Bozinoff.

Lorne Bozinoff, Ph.D. is the president and founder of Forum Research. He can be reached at or at (416) 960-9603.