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Why Do I Hear So Many Horror Stories About Canadian Health Care?

I lived in Canada for four years, the health system was great. My sister-in-law has lived there three years, her biggest complaint is that she only gets a dozen mental health visits a year. (Imagine that, health coverage the includes mental health!)
I worked at a school in Canada and I was a sports coach so I went to the hospital frequently with injured kids. I was injured myself once and had to get a CAT scan. I never had to wait, I could go to any hospital I wanted.
I had a coworker who injured his eye ask me to take him to the emergency room. I thought it would be like a typical American Hospital and take hours. We were in and out in less than an hour, stitches and all. When was the last time you were in and out of an emergency room that quickly?
I house sat for a physician. We talked about there health system and he loved it. Sure, he made a slightly more modest salary than his American counterparts. But he drove a BMW, sent all his kids to private school and lived in a Victorian era home that is worth well over a million dollars so he was not hurting for money.
So what is the deal with all these horror stories? Where are they coming from?

Posted on March 1, 2010 at 2:23 am by radiology · Permalink
In: Cat Scan Salary · Tagged with: , , , , , , ,

6 Responses

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  1. Written by Karen C
    on March 1, 2010 at 3:05 am

    We hear most of those horror stories from American’s who know not what they are talking about or are Republican (same difference?!) or from Canadians who have never lived anywhere else and have no idea how awful the American system is. Or maybe they are paid to say those things or it is the only chance they will ever get to be on tv – anything is possible. I don’t know one person who has had anything really wrong with them who complains.
    True – it could be better but so can everything in life.
    Political propaganda – pure and simple.

  2. Written by thinking
    on March 1, 2010 at 3:32 am

    Most of it is invention by politicians in the USA to undermine attempts to get health reform.
    There was a lady trumpeting her distress recently that she had to go to the USA to get treatment for her **brain tumour **because of wait lists in Canada. Turned out the wait list to get the CYST removed from her head was 31 days……
    Not very true.

  3. Written by Kam
    on March 1, 2010 at 4:26 am

    Watch Michael Moore’s, ”Sicko” if you haven’t. He actaully asks this exact same question, and goes to Windsor, ON into emergency rooms & asks patients if those stories are true. They all say no.

  4. Written by Douglas L
    on March 1, 2010 at 4:52 am

    1. In the USA there is a great debate on health care. Special interests have a vested stake in insuring that Universal health care does not come to the USA. For this reason they have mounted a huge smear campaign against the Canadian system.
    2. As part of the smear campaign they have enlisted any Canadians with an axe to grind against the Canadian system. Some of them are just crazy. Others really have been let down by the system. No system is perfect.

  5. Written by Jon
    on March 1, 2010 at 5:39 am

    Simple: There are 30,000,000 Canadians. When you have that many people, surely you can find at least one who doesn’t like something, no matter what that thing is. So of course the Republicans will go looking for the tiny percentage of Canadians who don’t like healthcare, and trot them out for the American TV audience pretending like these people’s opinions are representative of the Canadian population as a whole. Which is completely dishonest.
    Interesting article from the LA Times titled “A Canadian Doctor Diagnoses US Healthcare”:…

  6. Written by isotope2
    on March 1, 2010 at 6:01 am

    you cannot compare big cities to smaller cities and towns, operating rooms, ERs and wards are being closed all across Canada in smaller cities and towns, people are waiting up to 6 years for a hip replacement, waiting lists for specialists can be 2 yrs long, fewer resources, smaller budgets – it depends on where you live, I dont get why most people cant understand that – how self centred and ignorant to not realized peopel living outside Toronto and Vancouver or Victoria are seriously jeorpardized by the failing health care system – check out Kamloops and Regine for starters, Salmon Arm etc
    I SAT in the ER for SEVEN hours with a broken back, I saw a woman go into a diabetic coma while waiting to see a Dr in ER. My daughter started having seizures and was told she had to wait TWO YEARS to see a neurologist, she finally ended up in ICU with 4 seizures back to back and THEN she got to see one sooner. My friend waited SIX years for a hip replacement in SK .. ’nuff said.
    Vancouver and Toronto have a lot more resources than other areas do