Trudeau Liberals tell us “they know best” re our health care options

Cambie centreHere 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.

10 thoughts on “Trudeau Liberals tell us “they know best” re our health care options

  1. Fully concur. I can understand why the BC government might be intervening as they have an election next May so I suspect for them it might be more political cover, but for the federal there is really no reason to. I should point out though in BC you can pay for faster services contrary to what some think, however it is illegal for doctors to work in both public and private systems and likewise illegal to buy private health insurance for covered procedures. As shown in other countries and even here, allowing a mixed system will not mean the end of medicare and its not either our current system or the US, there are many other options too. 5 provinces (Saskatchewan, Quebec, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland) allow private health insurance for covered procedures although asides from Quebec the others are small provinces so not enough demand to make it profitable. In Quebec this was done due to the Chaoulli case in 2005 which went all the way to the Supreme Court. In fact allowing individuals to buy private health insurance for covered products would make private health care more accessible to more as much like in Britain I suspect many companies would buy it for their employees. On working in both systems, I oppose allowing doctors to cut back their time in the public system to work in the private, but I have no problem with doctors working in the private sector on top of what they do in the public sector, this will mean shorter lines for everyone. In addition how about this for an idea, every surgery done in the private system for a fee, one must be done for free. That is what Saskatchewan does for private MRI clinics and this worked quite well.

    We have a mixed system in education and it hasn’t meant the end of our education system so I don’t see why health care would be any different. The real problem is too many Canadians see the Canada Health Act as a sacred cow that cannot be touched regardless of logic. It was introduced in 1984 so considering how much the world has changed since then, nothing wrong with updating it. And never mind it was not introduced due to evidence and research, but rather politics. At the time, Trudeau Sr., was trailing badly in the polls and so he was hoping he could trip up the Mulroney PCs on this issue, but it failed.

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  2. Pingback: About Turn! « Jack's Newswatch

  3. There is more to this than is readily apparent. The Cambie Surgical Center was started by Dr.Brian Day, former chief of cardiac surgery at Vancouver General. Day was one of those rebellious types who exposed the health care system in B.C. back in the ’90’s,when he appeared on CTV regularly reporting on the true state of the system. The government and the College hated him for it, he made powerful enemies.

    Day was the first to tell the truth about waiting lists,and stated emphatically that every surgeon in B.C. had patients dying on the waiting lists. Until then, the public had no idea the situation was as bad as Day exposed. He has fought for every inch of ground for the past twenty years, with bitter opposition from the health care industry and government.

    His work has had many positive effects, but the entrenched HC system is still overpowering monopoly it has always been.

    On a personal note, my crippled son needed an MRI to check his spine, we fought for two years just to get him on the waiting list,and he got bumped twice by allegedly more serious cases,although doctors have told me that translates to “patients of surgeons who have more political clout”. The original wait time was two years,after three years we finally paid for an MRI at a private clinic to the tune of a thousand dollars. Their machine was state of the art,while the HC system MRI was,as a technician told us,the first of the MRI series, three steps down from the private machine, like a 1960’s era X-ray.

    Trudeau and the Liberals are fully aware the HC system in Canada is second rate, but HC has become , as any monopoly eventually does, always does, dedicated to it’s own survival with the original goal long forgotten.

    If doctors like Brian Day had had their say, Canada would have had a parallel HC system like many other developed Countries, instead of being the embarrassing third member of the axis of medicare evil with Cuba and North Korea.

    Our HC system is is hugely inefficient and rife with patronage,and that is the reason why all governments in this Country fight tenaciously with fear mongering tactics to maintain the status quo.

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  4. “Two tier isn’t much mentioned any more, it’s simply happening. I too had a hernia repair at Shouldice,a world class facility for hernia repairs. Like most others , used private insurance.

    Politics is politics but playing games with people’s lives on health issues is beyond the pale. So many people without doctors is another grave issue. Emergency rooms are bursting at the seams 24/7 and no hope in sight as the Wynne government meddles with the medical professionals, forcing hospital beds and cancelling surgeries. Many to leave or retire early.

    It’s a disgrace, we have more technology and less care than we had twenty-five years ago.

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  5. Statists attitudes on health care mirror their general attitude about the virtue of their governance and their disdain for what they see as ignorant and mean-spirited citizens and business. They set themselves up as a monopoly provider, which increases the price of said goods, but the taxpayer gets the bill. Squeeze out private competition in as many areas of economic activity as possible, with the state left as the only provider. No need to improve service because they get paid anyway. On a waiting list? Who cares, pay me. Don’t like that? You’re a racist, pay me. Bring on the hobgoblins!

    Create a crisis here and there, and everywhere, and then statists set themselves up as the saviour, in spite of being the main cause. Sound familiar? Put very simply, statists don’t believe in a mixed economy, the state is overarching.

    That’s why I don’t support legalization of marijuana. Not because I care if people smoke it, but because government wants to take over production and distribution, at greatly inflated prices no doubt, to recover its “social cost.”

    They don’t deserve any more of our money for whatever reasoning, to further damage and distort prosperity & liberty.

    The result will be about the same as health care. An obscenely expensive system that actually limits supply (Economics 101, lower supply, higher prices) whereby, again like health care, people won’t be able to get their bud from the government store, or at least have to stand in long lines to pay twice as much as before. Lots of good government jobs.

    So, of course they will turn to their previous providers and since the government hasn’t stepped up enforcement to deal with the continuing to thrive black market, government sales will plummet in the long run and we will be back at the same place we were, except for two things: the gangs will have already gone after the kids and the government will again have more of our money in their ongoing attempts to improves us all one taxpayer at a time, to turn us all into good little libertarian socialists, lorded over by our gated and insulated apparatchiks in media, schools and parliaments.

    Our constitution guarantees us peace, order and good government. Does anyone still argue big and getting bigger government is good government? Hardly, but limited government is. Statists would rather play absolutist with bleats about “we are a part of government” and “you didn’t build that” rather than debate the point of limiting government.

    The only way we can unpack the decades of progressive thought rot is to understand how far removed we are from limited, and therefore good, government. That debate hasn’t happened in decades, but it will be forced on us.

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  6. That’s true for the most part Liz but I have to admit when I ended up in emerg two years ago with a near heart attack, I was put in a private room in the cardiac wing within a couple of hours and on the table for the angioplasty and stent shortly after. They saved my life and stopped any heart damage. I was in for five days and one of my nurses had just returned from working in Florida. So, I asked her what my care would have cost in the U.S. and she said around $20,000 at a minimum. So, our system is good when it comes to emergencies like that. 😉

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  7. Phil — I believe that is what all the hysteria is regarding Trump in the U.S. How dare he suggest improving things for blacks in the inner cities. It is so bizarre to listen to the progressive logic. The media, apart from a few at Fox and Breitbart, is at the head of the pack too as far as the hysteria goes.

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  8. Yes, no problem with such emergencies for sure but so many problems not treated cause a lot of suffering. No system is perfect but at least we have one of the best as far as universal health care goes, the problems lie in administering it. A lot of the costs lie there, huge salaries for hospital administrators , their support staff etc.

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  9. Exactly! It’s not Trump’s prerogative to comment on the plight of blacks, the alt-lefties consider the very idea he would as racist in itself. Hence, Hillary specious blowup, invoking the Dem invented KKK and Trump.

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