Medicare Timeline


1905 – Saskatchewan becomes a province.

1906 – Saskatchewan Medical Association organized.

1915 – First municipal doctor in North America: Dr. Henry Schmitt of Holdfast.

1916 – First municipal doctor legislation in North America.

Municipal Hospital Act.

1917 – Dr. Robert Ferguson appointed superintendent of the new sanatorium at Fort Qu’Appelle.

1919 – Legislation provides for the Municipal Doctor Plan on a salary basis.

1921 – Formation of the Saskatchewan Anti–tuberculosis Commission.

Canada’s first representative cross–sectional (TB) school study.

1923 – First travelling TB clinics.

1928 – Dr. Ferguson’s landmark TB study among Saskatchewan First Nations.

1929 – First universal free diagnosis and treatment of TB.

1930 – First cancer control agency in Canada.

1932 – First statistically controlled Bacille Calmette Guérin vaccination (BCG) among newborn First Nations infants.

1934 – First BCG vaccination among student nurses.

1939 – Medical Services Incorporated (MSI) formed by Regina doctors to provide a physician–sponsored medical care service.

1941 – Provincial legislation amended to allow municipal doctors to be paid on a fee– for–service basis.

1942 – Saskatchewan first province in Canada with sufficient numbers of beds (three per TB death) to successfully treat the decease.

1943 – First province–wide photofluorographic surveys begin.

1944 – North America’s first social democratic government.
Act of the legislature proclaimed that residents of the province were eligible for free services relating to the diagnosis and treatment of cancer.

The Sigerist Commission recommendations are a blue print for future reforms.

1945 – First comprehensive health plan for pensioners and widows.

Formation of the Saskatchewan Health Services Planning Commission.

Health Region No. 1, Swift Current is created.
Saskatchewan first province to provide capital grants for hospital construction.

Canada’s first full–time cancer physicist, Harold Johns, starts his a joint appointment with the Physics Department of the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon and the new Saskatchewan Cancer Commission in Regina. Johns was the first medical physicist in Canada.

1946 – Swift Current becomes the first region in Canada to combine public health with prepaid universal medical care.

Cornerstone laid for the College of Medicine at the University of Saskatchewan.

Funding approved for the construction of the University Hospital in Saskatoon.

1947 – First universal hospitalisation insurance program in North America.

1948 – National Health Program of Grants initiated by the federal government

1949 – First concerted clinical use of the betatron in the world.

1951 – First successful use of a calibrated cobalt–60 unit in the world.

The formation of the Swift Current Regional Hospital Council is the first Regional Hospital Board in Canada.

1956 – Proposed extension of the Swift Current type of Health Care to Regina Rural and the Assiniboia–Gravelbourg areas is decisively defeated in local votes.

1959 – Premier T.C. Douglas announces plan to introduce a prepaid medical–care program.

1962 – First universal Medicare in North America.


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