Victoria Scraps Planned MSP Premium Hikes
Victoria, B.C. – The provincial government says its strong fiscal performance has allowed them to cancel their planned 4% increase to MSP premiums.
It also means those eligible for Regular Premium Assistance will see a 4% reduction of their premium beyond what was announced in this year’s provincial budget.
Cancelling the January premium increase will save adults up to $36 per year. Today’s changes also mean a single parent with two children will only be charged the single adult rate, rather than the three-person rate they pay today – saving this family $900 per year.
“B.C.’s strong economic growth and better-than-forecast revenues are paying dividends for British Columbians,” said Finance Minister Mike de Jong.
“The changes we’ve made to MSP, both in Budget 2016 and today, mean that people will see their premiums reduced or eliminated, and no premiums will increase in 2017. Cancelling the planned rate increase and reducing the amount that people on premium assistance pay is yet another step toward fairer and progressive funding for health care.”
The government says MSP premiums account for only about 13% of the overall health-care budget and other taxes like corporate income tax, sales tax, natural resource and other government revenues are all required to help fund the cost of health care.
In 2016-2017, total health-care spending is forecast to be more than $19 billion, or 42% of all government spending.