Making Medicare:  The History of Health Care in Canada, 1914-2007 Back to Timeline Back to Timeline
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Claude Castonguay

Born in Québec City in 1929, Claude Castonguay is an educator, politician and businessman. Attendance at Laval University from 1948 to 1950, followed by the study of actuarial science at the University of Manitoba from 1950 to 1951, qualified Castonguay to lecture at Laval University from 1951 to 1957 while he worked as an actuary at several Quebec insurance companies. Castonguay’s contribution to the creation of the Quebec Pension Plan in 1960–1963 and the success of his consulting firm enhanced his reputation in Quebec as an expert on government policy.  Initially appointed by Premier Jean Lesage to chair a commission to study and make recommendations on all aspects of health and welfare in Quebec, Castonguay’s role was re-affirmed by Union Nationale Premier Daniel Johnson in November 1966. After studying the Hall Commission report, as well as conducting hearings throughout Quebec, he issued the first volume of the Castonguay Report in August 1967. The Castonguay Commission’s recommendation “that a complete and universal health insurance plan be established in Quebec” (Malcolm G. Taylor, Health Insurance and Canadian Public Policy: The Seven Decisions That Created the Canadian Health Insurance System and Their Outcomes [Montréal and Kingston: McGill–Queen’s University Press, 1987], p. 387) was endorsed by all parties in the National Assembly.  Castonguay successfully entered politics in the 1970 Quebec election as a Liberal member of the National Assembly of Quebec, where he served as Minister of Health, Family and Social Welfare. Today a noted private-sector executive, Castonguay is still active in redefining medicare.    




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