Tax hike could increase doctor shortage
Critics say the Parti Quebecois' new tax hike could encourage more doctors to leave or cut back on their hours.
The PQ plans to retroactively hike taxes for people who make more than 130 thousand a year.
For doctors, that could mean an added $1,000 - $10,000 tax increase this year.
One economist from the Montreal economic institute, says because of the new taxes, some doctors will tempted to cut back on their hours.
"You might think twice about working more if you don't get more money in your pocket," says Youri Chassin.
He says other doctors, as well as other highly skilled and in-demand professionals, may leave the province.
The Chief Economist with the Quebec business council, Norma Kozhaya, makes the same argument. "A doctor or an engineer or someone who works in IT would ask himself, 'is it worth it to work more? Am I better off staying in Quebec or maybe I'll go to Ontario or Alberta or BC'," she says.
Quebec Doctors' federation
The spokesperson for the Quebec Doctors' Federation, Jean-Pierre Dion, says members are already talking about the PQ announcement.
"This is not an incentive for doctors to work harder," he says.
Dion adds that because many doctors are incorporated, they will also be hit by the PQ's plans to raise the capital gains tax.
Dion says the federation has not yet decided how to precede and will wait for the premier or finance minister to officially address the subject.
A general physician makes an average $180,000 a year. A heart surgeon makes about $500,000.