Making Medicare:  The History of Health Care in Canada, 1914-2007 Back to Timeline Back to Timeline
History: 1914-1929 ORIGINS, 19141929 DEPRESSION DEVELOPMENTS, 19301939



European Models

In Western Europe, many countries had followed the lead of Chancellor Otto von Bismarck's Germany, which had introduced health insurance in 1883 to halt the radicalization of the German workforce. In 1911, David Lloyd George, the British Chancellor of the Exchequer, brought in a National Insurance Act, which provided state-funded health insurance for 15 million low-income workers. This triggered some interest in Canada, but very limited action during the war years. Public health advocates supported the concept, but other practitioners expressed opposition to state medicine.

Photo: David Lloyd George, C-007525

David Lloyd George, who brought in national health insurance for British workers in 1911.
Library and Archives Canada, Patent and Copyright Office, C-007525

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    Date Created: March 31, 2010 | Last Updated: April 21, 2010