Here we go again! The short-sighted, one-sided, political anti-private health care preaching is back. PM Justin Trudeau will be an intervener in a court case in B.C. that will start on September 6, 2016 related to the Cambie Surgery Clinic, a private B.C. hospital.
On what basis will the prime minister try to shut down the B.C. private option? By using a report that was commissioned by his government, that’s how. It is, of course, very negative and, in fact, compares the private option to a U.S. model rather than a European model like Germany.
Which is a real puzzle to me given that Trudeau doesn’t seem to have a problem with his home province of Quebec having private options? I mean, if one province can have private options under the Canada Health Act, and the sky has not fallen, why is it wrong for other provinces to want the same?
For example, what do Canadians do when the care they want or need is not available or not timely in their province or territory? Should our provincial plan not arrange for us to get the treatment we can’t get in our publicly funded system in the U.S? You’d think so. But, only in certain instances, it seems.
Check out this story. Trent Hills Mayor Hector Macmillan has a tumor which is killing him but, while he can’t have the timely surgery he needs in Ontario, OHIP won’t send him to the U.S.
I have a couple of personal examples too.
- Three years ago I broke a knee and was told I would have had to wait three months for an MRI. However, I was able to get an appointment within two days with a Buffalo MRI clinic. It cost me $465.00 US which was worth every penny because I was able to begin physio treatment immediately. Technically, I should not have been allowed to have that option.
- Last summer my husband discovered he had to have a hernia repaired. He had two choices, to get it done in the local hospital or go to Shouldice, a private hernia hospital in Toronto. He went to Shouldice and was glad he did because many of the patients he met there were getting their publicly done hernias redone. The fee was $1,000, which was reimbursed by our private insurance. Plus, even though Shouldice is private, OHIP paid a portion, just as they already do with hundreds of Ontario’s private blood and x-ray facilities.
Without a doubt, it would have been more helpful if the report writers had looked at what Quebec and European countries are doing regarding private-public health care, rather than being obsessed with everything the U.S. does.
The crux of the matter should be that, as long Canadians use their provincial and territorial health card, it shouldn’t matter if the service they are using is public or private.