Thank Heaven We Don’t Have Canadian Style Healthcare #1
For years Americans have been bombarded with distortions and outright lies about Canada’s single payer health care system — all part of a right wing campaign to keep voters in this country from even considering a similar option. Then the other day I came upon a piece by Bill Mann on the Marketwatch website in which he was discussing an article in the most recent online edition of the AARP journal. Here’s part of what Mann wrote:
“It’s a relief to see hard facts finally emerging on this side of the border about Canada’s single-payer health-care system.
For years I’ve heard Canada’s popular medicare (the Canadian term for universal health care) system slagged by lies, distortions, and outright ignorance on U.S. radio talk shows and other American popular media (where do people GET this stuff?). And for years, I’ve tried to set the record straight in my online and newspaper columns, having lived in Canada and actually having used their system. My son and his family are now covered by it in Vancouver… “
Mann went on to say that Canadians generally quite like their health care system.
I was of course intrigued by Mann’s comments and went to the AARP article he referenced on their website. It is titled “5 Myths About Canada’s Health Care System; The truth may surprise you about international health car.” It was written by Aaron E. Carroll, M.D., the director of the Center for Health Policy and Professionalism Research in Indianapolis. Here are snippets from just two of the myth’s he debunks.
Myth #1: Canadians are flocking to the United States to get medical care.
…the study’s authors examined data from the 18,000 Canadians who participated in the National Population Health Survey. In the previous year, 90 of those 18,000 Canadians had received care in the United States; only 20 of them, however, reported going to the United States expressively for the purpose of obtaining care.
Myth #2: Doctors in Canada are flocking to the United States to practice.
… In 2004, net emigration became net immigration. Let me say that again. More doctors were moving into Canada than were moving out.
The other myths Carroll debunks in this piece involve long waits for care, and comparing the kind of health care rationing that takes place in Canada compared to this country. Interesting stuff all around.
This article pretty much destroys the arguments of the ideologues who want you to believe that a single payer system is not only “socialist” (a supposed evil in itself) but detrimental to a nation’s health. And remember, this appeared in a publication of AARP — not exactly a left-wing outfit.
You can read Mann’s entire piece at http://www.marketwatch.com/story/myths-about-canada-us-health-care-debunked-2012-08-09?link=MW_home_latest_news and the entire AARP article at http://www.aarp.org/politics-society/government-elections/info-03-2012/myths-canada-health-care.html