POLITICS

Saskatchewan premier calls health ultimatum frustrating, but hopes for more cash

12/20/2011 01:15 EST | Updated 02/19/2012 05:12 EST
REGINA - Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall says the federal government's ultimatum on health funding is frustrating.

Federal Finance Minister Jim Flaherty says current six per cent annual increases will stay in place through 2017, but will then drop and be tied to the rate of economic growth plus inflation.

Wall says the six per cent extension is not as long as the province wanted.

But he also thinks there could be other opportunities to get more money from Ottawa for innovations to improve patient care.

Wall says that cash should be recognized over and above health transfer payments.

Six provinces are criticizing the deal that was put on the table Monday — Ontario Finance Minister Dwight Duncan called it a lump of coal.