About the reports

These three reports summarize the current state of primary healthcare in Canada, investigate best international practices and provide concrete recommendations on how Canada can redefine its priorities in order to strengthen the system. Commissioned by CHSRF and the Canadian Working Group for Primary Healthcare Improvement, the three reports will be used to guide activities in developing a pan-Canadian strategy for using evidence to improve the design and delivery of primary healthcare. The Canadian Working Group for Primary Healthcare Improvement was formed at an April 2008 meeting of leaders in primary healthcare (researchers, practitioners, funders and policy makers) that was convened by CHSRF – the group’s lead agency. 

The reports

What are the Critical Attributes and Benefits of a High-quality Primary Healthcare System?

Dale McMurchy
January 2009 (released January 2010)

  • This paper summarizes the key attributes and benefits of high-quality primary healthcare systems. It covers factors such as orientation and design, organization and process, effective governance, physician supply and the critical features unique to primary care delivery.
    » Go to report (PDF, 514 KB)

The Health and Economic Consequences of Achieving a High-quality Primary Healthcare System in Canada – “Applying What Works in Canada: Closing the Gap”


Alan Katz, Richard H. Glazier, Janani Vijayaraghavan
February 2009 (released January 2010)
  • Currently, there is a large gap between the ideal primary healthcare system – one that relies on evidence-based practice – and the reality of Canada’s system. This report analyzes the effects, both health-related and economic, of moving the reality toward the ideal.
    » Go to report (PDF, 2 MB)

A Structure for Co-ordinating Canadian Primary Healthcare Research

G. Russell, S. Johnston, P. Thille, R. Geneau, J. Conklin, W. Hogg, Y. Ikezawa
February 2009 (released January 2010)
  • If Canada wants a high-quality primary healthcare system that integrates emerging evidence into practice and policy, then it needs a co-ordinating body to support all those working to improve primary healthcare through evidence. The authors investigate international and domestic models, examine various frameworks and processes, compare the pros and cons, and explore the feasibility of implementing a network model in the Canadian context.
    » Go to report (PDF, 415 KB)