CANADIAN HEALTH CARE: ANOTHER DAY, ANOTHER FAILURE

The Toronto Star reports that two patients have had enough of the vaunted Canadian health care system:

Two Ontario patients who had brain tumours removed in the United States because they say they couldn’t get quick treatment here are suing the provincial government over what they claim are unjustly long wait times for medical care.

And, contrary to the claims of the single-payer crowd, such wait times have real costs–beyond the obvious pain and suffering of the patients:

[One plaintiff] paid $27,650 for his consultation, biopsy and surgery in Buffalo and OHIP has refused to reimburse him because he failed to seek pre-approval for the expense, the claim notes.

Moreover, these folks aren’t rich. They have made considerable sacrifices to get access to care. Here’s how the second plaintiff puts it:

We’ve re-mortgaged our home. It has to be known. People can’t go through this … I was very fortunate to save my eyesight but the cost and the battle has been devastating.

So … tell me again: Why the hell would we want to emulate a system that produces such results every day of the week?

Comments 7

  1. Marc Brown wrote:

    ‘We’ve re-mortgaged our home. It has to be known. People can’t go through this … I was very fortunate to save my eyesight but the cost and the battle has been devastating.’

    This story is far more typical of the US – there are thousands of such stories to read on the net. But you know that, don’t you.

    Posted 07 Sep 2007 at 3:59 am
  2. Catron wrote:

    This story is far more typical of the US – there are thousands of such stories to read on the net. But you know that, don’t you.

    Actually, I know no such thing. And neither do you. I refer you (once again) to this.

    Posted 07 Sep 2007 at 9:41 am
  3. Marc Brown wrote:

    ‘Actually, I know no such thing. And neither do you. I refer you (once again) to this.’

    Well, you’re wrong, which if you read the various submissions to Congress (especially http://judiciary.house.gov/media/pdfs/White070717.pdf) you should know. The truth is, once again, that no one really knows what the actual figures are in the US – but the bottomline is far greater than in countries such as Canada and the UK. If you can honestly say that there are more people by percentage population in Canada or the UK who face difficulty with medical bills than in the US then I would question your sanity.

    Posted 07 Sep 2007 at 3:41 pm
  4. Frustrated Canuck wrote:

    I have to travel to the US for care that I’m NOT getting in Canada. We have a death by waiting list system in Canada as opposed to a genuine healthcare system

    Posted 30 Jan 2008 at 8:40 pm
  5. Aaron Kinney wrote:

    Re: Mark Brown @ #3,

    What you fail to realize is that the Canadian who had to get a mortgage would obviously have SAVED money by sticking with the Canadian system, but he would have paid more in HEALTH costs, as in more medical problems, possibly even death.

    Thats why he chose to mortgage his house: it was the less expensive of the two options.

    What is a higher expense? A mortgage payment or your life? Which is more valuable?

    Posted 13 Mar 2008 at 4:06 pm
  6. Marc Brown wrote:

    Aaron wrote: ‘What you fail to realize is that the Canadian who had to get a mortgage would obviously have SAVED money by sticking with the Canadian system, but he would have paid more in HEALTH costs, as in more medical problems, possibly even death.’

    As I said, if you can show me that fewer Americans per capita are bankrupted by medical bills or go without essential care than people in Canada, the UK, France, Sweden, Netherlands etc then please step forward with the evidence.

    Posted 14 Mar 2008 at 3:41 am
  7. Kevin wrote:

    “As I said, if you can show me that fewer Americans per capita are bankrupted by medical bills”

    Are they bankrupted because they can’t pay the bill, or because they don’t think they should have to pay it because they believe wrongly that they are entitled to have someone else pay it? Or maybe it’s because, even though they could afford health insurance, and knew they should get it, they chose to get the 50 inch plasma instead.

    Posted 14 Mar 2008 at 3:40 pm

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