How much did New Brunswick spend on health in 2021?

Total Health Spending

In 2021,

  • Percentage of GDP: Health spending accounted for 15.2% of New Brunswick's Gross Domestic Product (GDP). 
  • New Brunswick’s portion of GDP that was spent on health was amongst the highest in Canada and higher than the Canadian average of 13.1%. 

GDP is the total value of all goods and services produced within one year in a specific region (e.g., New Brunswick) and is used to measure the size of the region’s economy.

•    Per Capita Spending: New Brunswick spent $8,204 per person (per capita) on health, which was 6.3% higher than in 2020. This comprised $5,851 from the public sector and $2,353 from the private sector.

Per capita refers to the actual amount spent per person.

Although New Brunswick spent a larger proportion of its GDP on health compared to the national average, its per capita health spending was the lowest in the country.

Changes Over Time

  • GDP Share: The portion of GDP spent on health decreased in 2021, from 16.1% in 2020 to 15.2% in 2021.
  • The proportion of GDP allocated to health also decreased for Canada, going from 13.8% in 2020, to 13.1% in 2021.
  • However, the actual amount spent per person has been increasing over time, showing consistent growth in both New Brunswick and Canada.
  • Per Capita Trends: Per capita health spending has been rising more slowly in New Brunswick than the national average. In New Brunswick, health spending increased by 32.9% since 2011, whereas in Canada, it rose by 48.3% during the same period.


Public Sector Spending

In 2021,

  • New Brunswick had the lowest public sector per capita health spending ($5,851) in Canada.
  • Provincial government funding made up the biggest portion of public sector health spending ($ 5,004 per capita).


Changes Over Time

  • Pace of Growth: New Brunswick had a higher provincial sector per capita health spending than the Canadian average until 2016.
  • New Brunswick's provincial sector spending has increased at a slower pace over time, falling below the Canadian average in 2016.

Public sector spending includes health care spending by governments and includes provincial government sector, federal direct sector, municipal government sector and social security funds.


Private Sector Spending

In 2021,

  • Per Capita Spending: Private sector per capita health spending in New Brunswick ($2,353) was higher than the national average of $2,298.
  • Medications made up the largest percentage of private spending at 36%.
  • Per capita spending on medications accounted for $847, surpassing the Canadian average of $702.


Private sector spending is spending that is paid directly by the patients and/or by their private health insurance for health services such as medications, physiotherapy, dentistry, counseling, etc.


Areas of Health Spending

Where is the money being spent on health in New Brunswick?

In 2021,

  • Top Three Areas: Hospitals, medications and “other institutions” were in the top 3 areas of health spending in New Brunswick. 
  • In Canada, on average, the top three were hospitals, medications and physicians. 

Comparison Across Provinces

In 2021,

  • Allocation Differences: New Brunswick’s spending on physicians, other professionals and public health were among the lowest in Canada.
  • New Brunswick’s spending on Hospitals, Other institutions, medications and administration were higher compared to the Canadian average.

For detailed information on specific spending categories, consult CIHI's National Health Expenditure Trends, 2023 — Methodology Notes (