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Will it just make things worse?

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With all this chatter about universal health care being the greatest thing since sliced bread, I'm wondering if this is one of those things that may be good in theory & principle but terrible in reality. 

What if the actual quality of healthcare decreases?  As it is, one waits nearly an hour to see the doctor even when you have decent health insurance.  My fear is that waiting rooms are going to turn into pseudo ER-style waiting rooms with overworked and underpaid doctors. As it is, many doctors now are turning down insurance.  I hope that if UHC does happen, doctors are incentivized in some way. 

by on Apr. 20, 2009 at 2:47 PM
Replies (11-18):
margroc
by on Apr. 20, 2009 at 3:51 PM


Quoting MelonyP:

As an American living in Canada, I now have firsthand experience with universal healthcare.  At first, I was jumping for joy because my healthcare plan in the States was substandard at best.  However, once I started to learn more about the Canadian healthcare system, I began to have some serious doubts as to whether I was really better off. 

First, I moved with my infant son.  Of course, I needed a doctor for him.  As it turned out, most doctors in the area were already booked and not accepting any new patients.  I ended up getting lucky when my husband's former doctor agreed to sign us all on as patients since he had been the doctor of my husband from a very young age.  However, a lot of people are not that lucky.  The clinics & ER are filled with people who cannot find a general practitioner.  People are forced onto waiting lists in order to get a doctor.  It's ridiculous!  But even with your own doctor, you had better make appointments in advance because the chances of seeing him/her on short-term notice are slim to none.  Therefore, even people with a general practitioner still end up waiting in the long lines at clinics or the ER since they cannot get an appointment with their own doctor.  Depending upon the city you live in - same thing can happen in private healthcare.

Second, I recently found out that colon cancer is twice as deadly in Canada than in the U.S.  Why?  Because the best medication for colon cancer has been listed as "too expensive" by the Canadian government and therefore, cannot be given to patients who need it.  I have also heard the same in Britain where women with breast cancer are denited the best meds for the same reason.  Sorry to sound rude - but bullshit! - when my sister was diagnosed with cancer she lived in US - came back to Canada because even with insurance she was falling into serious debt paying for expenses that were not covered completely - her drugs in US were not covered AT ALL by her insurance and cost $3000 USD per month and in Canada she receives her meds gratis.

Third, there are the LONG waits for specialized attention.  Need a hip replaced?  Well, it could take months or even years!  An MRI?  Don't hold your breath!  There is a serious shortage of specialized equipment and doctors in this country and thus, people who need care now are forced to wait months or years for help.  I konw of a lady who needs a hip and knee replacement and after waiting 7 months just to see the doctor, who knows what the additional wait will be to get it done.  Meanwhile, she is in some serious pain and her life has suffered since she can barely get around and cope with the agony.  These are elective procedures - yes there are waiting times for elective procedures - if you need an MRI because you may have something of a serious life threatening instance you will receive an MRI promptly. I have friends who have found lumps in their breast and they were sent for the appropriate testing procedures within days.  My father received an MRI 2 days after his physician suspected he may have esophageal cancer.

I have also heard "rumors" that those with the money get treated first...no matter the waiting list.  Why would the government want to save someone who only makes 20k a year over someone who makes 200k (or more) ?  The same with seniors.  It seems that since they're "going to die soon anyway" & don't pay the taxes every year, they're a waste of time.  That is a complete fabrication - both of my parents (mom is 79; dad is 77) receive excellent care and also received excellent timely care for life threatening issues enabling them both to be independent and happy people.  The fact that you would say this makes me feel a little ill - "rumours" - bull! Also, those with the ability to pay in cash tend to hop the border to the U.S. for care.  Why would they do that if universal healthcare is all that it's cracked up to be?  Bologna!  Sure some people go to the US if they wish to receive care for ELECTIVE procedures sooner.

And let's not forget the taxes.  Universal healthcare is not free.  By far!  Every time I purchase something in the store, I get taxed twice.  Once by the province (PST) & then again by the government (GST).  I don't believe anyone wants an additional 4-5% tax on the things they buy in the U.S.  It will happen, though if you fall for the so-called "free" healthcare.  And let's not forget the "sin" tax.  Alcohol, beer, & cigarettes are double (in some cases) what they are in the U.S.  Again - you are absolutely correct - we do pay more sin taxes - we also pay Provincial taxes (although not all provinces pay) and a Goods and Services Tax - this tax used to be hidden in the cost of goods as a manufacturer tax and you could be very well paying the same tax in the US but just don't know it.  Taxes are collected to pay for healthcare - what you pay is determined by how much income you earn (at least in Ontario) and you know exactly how much you pay per year - I paid less than $300 CDN for 2008 - how much does the average American earner pay for their insurance for the year?

I could go on forever :0)  If you want a great book to read, check out "America Alone" by Mark Steyn.  He explains the topic much better than I ever could and will tell you exactly why we need to beware of socialism.


Margroc

margroc
by on Apr. 20, 2009 at 3:53 PM


Quoting Eilish:


Quoting margroc:


Quoting Scorpio359:

Why would doctors want to be involved in inferior methods of treating people and being told what they can and what they can't do by the government? Socialism never works. Spoke to another business partner from Quebec Saturday and he gave a dire warning about universal health care and its treatment methods. He warned Armerica don't do it, you are headed for toatal disaster. You will not be given choices on whom you get as a doctor nor the specialists you need in special fields. You will loose your freedom of choice. Socialism does not work.


Your friend from Quebec is totally 100% wrong - I am Canadian - choose my own Dr.; have always received excellent care. I am hearing impaired and have always had access to top specialists - if I didn't like a specialist I would speak to my GP who would then refer me to another specialist.  True, we do have to wait longer for elective surgeries but in my experience - a father with esophageal cancer; sister with stomach cancer and a mother who had a stroke - ALL OF THEM ARE FINE AND HEALTHY TODAY.

I think when you are speaking about the quality of your Health care in the U.S. you should perhaps try speaking with someone who is lower income and cannot afford insurance.

Our health care system in Canada does have some flaws as nothing is perfect but it certainly works and works well.

Your comment re: socialism tells me that you are buying into the fear propanganda brought out by the right.  Universal Health Care is no more socialism than is a police force or fire brigade.

Actually it isn't propaganda since it's the truth.

So then you consider a police force or fire brigade socialism too?  They are public services paid for by tax dollars along with education, etc.  - that is how Canadians view health care - not as socialism but as a public service. 

CharmaineL
by Bronze Member on Apr. 20, 2009 at 4:11 PM


Quoting sassyandy124:

     There are many reason that gov't funded health care is not good. I won't go into all of them Elish and other pp's did a good job. I will say this. to see how it will "work" in America you only have to look at military and veterans care. That is what they receive, gov't funded health care. It is substandard in so many ways I can't even tell you. I encourage everyone to do some research, see what the UHC countries DO NOT Tell you. GO to a veteran's hospital, see the sad state that most buildings and patients are in. I personally know lots of vets and active duty personnel that pay out of pocket for their own insurance so they don't have to rely on the gov't.

Excellent point. There was a piece on the news just the other day on the deplorable conditions at some veteran's hospitals. It was very disturbing to see. 

MelonyP
by Member on Apr. 20, 2009 at 4:36 PM


Quoting margroc:

 

Quoting MelonyP:

As an American living in Canada, I now have firsthand experience with universal healthcare.  At first, I was jumping for joy because my healthcare plan in the States was substandard at best.  However, once I started to learn more about the Canadian healthcare system, I began to have some serious doubts as to whether I was really better off. 

First, I moved with my infant son.  Of course, I needed a doctor for him.  As it turned out, most doctors in the area were already booked and not accepting any new patients.  I ended up getting lucky when my husband's former doctor agreed to sign us all on as patients since he had been the doctor of my husband from a very young age.  However, a lot of people are not that lucky.  The clinics & ER are filled with people who cannot find a general practitioner.  People are forced onto waiting lists in order to get a doctor.  It's ridiculous!  But even with your own doctor, you had better make appointments in advance because the chances of seeing him/her on short-term notice are slim to none.  Therefore, even people with a general practitioner still end up waiting in the long lines at clinics or the ER since they cannot get an appointment with their own doctor.  Depending upon the city you live in - same thing can happen in private healthcare.

Second, I recently found out that colon cancer is twice as deadly in Canada than in the U.S.  Why?  Because the best medication for colon cancer has been listed as "too expensive" by the Canadian government and therefore, cannot be given to patients who need it.  I have also heard the same in Britain where women with breast cancer are denited the best meds for the same reason.  Sorry to sound rude - but bullshit! - when my sister was diagnosed with cancer she lived in US - came back to Canada because even with insurance she was falling into serious debt paying for expenses that were not covered completely - her drugs in US were not covered AT ALL by her insurance and cost $3000 USD per month and in Canada she receives her meds gratis.  

 I just saw the colon cancer study on a Canadian news channel so I'm guessing it's true.  I didn't say all cancers relating to Canada.  And the breast cancer comment came from a recent law made in Britain, not Canada.

Third, there are the LONG waits for specialized attention.  Need a hip replaced?  Well, it could take months or even years!  An MRI?  Don't hold your breath!  There is a serious shortage of specialized equipment and doctors in this country and thus, people who need care now are forced to wait months or years for help.  I konw of a lady who needs a hip and knee replacement and after waiting 7 months just to see the doctor, who knows what the additional wait will be to get it done.  Meanwhile, she is in some serious pain and her life has suffered since she can barely get around and cope with the agony.  These are elective procedures - yes there are waiting times for elective procedures - if you need an MRI because you may have something of a serious life threatening instance you will receive an MRI promptly. I have friends who have found lumps in their breast and they were sent for the appropriate testing procedures within days.  My father received an MRI 2 days after his physician suspected he may have esophageal cancer.

I have also heard "rumors" that those with the money get treated first...no matter the waiting list.  Why would the government want to save someone who only makes 20k a year over someone who makes 200k (or more) ?  The same with seniors.  It seems that since they're "going to die soon anyway" & don't pay the taxes every year, they're a waste of time.  That is a complete fabrication - both of my parents (mom is 79; dad is 77) receive excellent care and also received excellent timely care for life threatening issues enabling them both to be independent and happy people.  The fact that you would say this makes me feel a little ill - "rumours" - bull!

Again, this was not aimed at Canada specifically.  I recently read an article that stated that some countries with government funded healthcare have cut certain life saving procedures for seniors because it's too expensive compared to the amount of time it would prolong life.  European countries.  Sorry.  I said "rumors" because I have yet to do any research.

Also, those with the ability to pay in cash tend to hop the border to the U.S. for care.  Why would they do that if universal healthcare is all that it's cracked up to be?  Bologna!  Sure some people go to the US if they wish to receive care for ELECTIVE procedures sooner.

I'm sorry but I must disagree.  Most cases I have read were about Canadians that would have died if they had not gone across the border.  Not all were wealthy.  One couple had to sell their house to do so.  The wife needed an MRI, couldn't get one soon enough & found out in the U.S. that she had a brain tumor.   I know the health system in Canada varies as it does anywhere in the world depending on where you live.  However, I still feel that with 9-10 times more people than Canada, Americans should beware. 

And let's not forget the taxes.  Universal healthcare is not free.  By far!  Every time I purchase something in the store, I get taxed twice.  Once by the province (PST) & then again by the government (GST).  I don't believe anyone wants an additional 4-5% tax on the things they buy in the U.S.  It will happen, though if you fall for the so-called "free" healthcare.  And let's not forget the "sin" tax.  Alcohol, beer, & cigarettes are double (in some cases) what they are in the U.S.  Again - you are absolutely correct - we do pay more sin taxes - we also pay Provincial taxes (although not all provinces pay) and a Goods and Services Tax - this tax used to be hidden in the cost of goods as a manufacturer tax and you could be very well paying the same tax in the US but just don't know it.  Taxes are collected to pay for healthcare - what you pay is determined by how much income you earn (at least in Ontario) and you know exactly how much you pay per year - I paid less than $300 CDN for 2008 - how much does the average American earner pay for their insurance for the year?

My husband made 100k in Ontario last year & I'm sorry but his taxes seemed a bit excessive to me when compared to his taxes in the U.S.  Not to mention the higher costs up here from clothing to books & sales tax. 

I could go on forever :0)  If you want a great book to read, check out "America Alone" by Mark Steyn.  He explains the topic much better than I ever could and will tell you exactly why we need to beware of socialism.

 


ddbz
by Silver Member on Apr. 20, 2009 at 5:04 PM


Quoting Scorpio359:

Why would doctors want to be involved in inferior methods of treating people and being told what they can and what they can't do by the government?

This is the way Dr.'s are already operating under our current HMO systems, which most people with health insurance use. You seem to have no idea how much is being withheld from you if you don't have an easily treatable medical condition.

Socialism never works. Spoke to another business partner from Quebec Saturday and he gave a dire warning about universal health care and its treatment methods. He warned Armerica don't do it, you are headed for toatal disaster.

We are already headed for a healthcare disaster. Don't you know how many people are uninsured already?

You will not be given choices on whom you get as a doctor nor the specialists you need in special fields. You will loose your freedom of choice. Socialism does not work.

It won't be perfect, but at least people won't die of treatable illnesses or lose their homes if they get sick.


Eilish
by on Apr. 20, 2009 at 5:09 PM


Quoting margroc:


Quoting Eilish:


Quoting margroc:


Quoting Scorpio359:

Why would doctors want to be involved in inferior methods of treating people and being told what they can and what they can't do by the government? Socialism never works. Spoke to another business partner from Quebec Saturday and he gave a dire warning about universal health care and its treatment methods. He warned Armerica don't do it, you are headed for toatal disaster. You will not be given choices on whom you get as a doctor nor the specialists you need in special fields. You will loose your freedom of choice. Socialism does not work.


Your friend from Quebec is totally 100% wrong - I am Canadian - choose my own Dr.; have always received excellent care. I am hearing impaired and have always had access to top specialists - if I didn't like a specialist I would speak to my GP who would then refer me to another specialist.  True, we do have to wait longer for elective surgeries but in my experience - a father with esophageal cancer; sister with stomach cancer and a mother who had a stroke - ALL OF THEM ARE FINE AND HEALTHY TODAY.

I think when you are speaking about the quality of your Health care in the U.S. you should perhaps try speaking with someone who is lower income and cannot afford insurance.

Our health care system in Canada does have some flaws as nothing is perfect but it certainly works and works well.

Your comment re: socialism tells me that you are buying into the fear propanganda brought out by the right.  Universal Health Care is no more socialism than is a police force or fire brigade.

Actually it isn't propaganda since it's the truth.

So then you consider a police force or fire brigade socialism too?  They are public services paid for by tax dollars along with education, etc.  - that is how Canadians view health care - not as socialism but as a public service.

You obviously don't understand the Constitutional role of government ... sorry, I'm not going to dignify this with a response.

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ThatTXMom
by Platinum Member on Apr. 20, 2009 at 6:36 PM

Or talk to a Native American who has been in the IHS (Indian Healthcare System) for much of their life.  The BIA (Bureau of Indian Affairs) is a governement agency and they run the IHS and the IHS completely stinks! I have insurance now and will move hell and high water to keep it so that I (and my children) must never again have to rely on the government for healthcare!

Quoting sassyandy124:

     There are many reason that gov't funded health care is not good. I won't go into all of them Elish and other pp's did a good job. I will say this. to see how it will "work" in America you only have to look at military and veterans care. That is what they receive, gov't funded health care. It is substandard in so many ways I can't even tell you. I encourage everyone to do some research, see what the UHC countries DO NOT Tell you. GO to a veteran's hospital, see the sad state that most buildings and patients are in. I personally know lots of vets and active duty personnel that pay out of pocket for their own insurance so they don't have to rely on the gov't.


forsythia_18
by on Apr. 20, 2009 at 6:47 PM

***bows head in grief for dying capitalism***

simple frown

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