A former Saskatchewan finance minister thinks it's time for people to start sharing some of the financial burden of health care.

Janice MacKinnon says co-payments for service are a possibility, but she rejects user fees because they could discourage people from seeking care.

She believes the income-tax system could be used to cover costs, and says greater use of private clinics, home care, long-term and chronic-care facilities would be more affordable than hospitals.

MacKinnon is now a professor of fiscal policy at the University of Saskatchewan, and her comments are contained in a study commissioned by the Ottawa-based Macdonald-Laurier Institute.