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Private Healthcare in Canada

  1. Jun 9, 2005 #1
    I'm Canadian, and I have the luxury of public healthcare right now. Why is private healthcare in Canada even being considered? And what other options do we have?
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2005
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 9, 2005 #2
    ....its being considered cuz the rich want to pay for the right to jump ahead of hte lines.
    ie organ transplant. I don't think it should be allowed, I say they should migrate to the US if they wanna jump infront of others who have been waiting on the list. but then again Money talks...
    Other options: i can't see any i think its unfair to buy your way ahead of the line...and i think canada should stick to the public health care.
  4. Jun 9, 2005 #3
    In my opinion, private healthcare is a really good idea. Some people are waiting for a long long time to get a minor surgery. This puts stress on the patient and their family/friends. If people are economically able to pay for private healthcare, I think that it should be available for these people to use.

    I am originally from Hong Kong, but living in Canada for studies. In Hong Kong we have both private and public healthcare, and the system is great!
  5. Jun 9, 2005 #4
    Interest that this was brought up today. For those not from Canada I believe that it is worth mentioning that the Supreme Court today ruled that Quebec's (a province in Canada...again for those who don't know) legislation banning private health care insurance was unconstitutional and must be scrapped.

    Personally I am quite against private health care where money becomes the objective for determining life and death situations. Everyone gets upset when you hear about long wait lists, or stories like the Terri Shiavo case, but in reality there are cases much worse than this ignored constantly. How many times do you hear about the person needing a heart transplant but their insurance only covers up to $100,000 and their surgery is listed at over twice that amount. You rarely do, but it happens all the time. Or where a person is on life support, not as a vegetable, but just suffering from extreme illness, but their money runs out and the plug is pulled on someone who otherwise would be expected to make at least a partial recovery.

    Having private health opportunities in limited, non-life threatening conditions, I am not completely against, but I do have great resentment for money determining life and death situations.
  6. Jun 9, 2005 #5


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    Correct me if im wrong... but doesnt money determine life and death situations in any case? Government doesnt get a lot of revenue.... less patients are treatable.... compared to no/limited health insurance.... less patients are treatable. Both really depend on the success of people in the country and since western nations are all generally pretty successful, it doesnt really make a difference. Substitute one disaster (no health insurance = you cant get treatement) for another (wait in line and die because you have to 'take a number' to get treated + red tape or what not).

    The good thing about private systems is that you have a choice... although of course, there are things such as this where it feels better if people didnt have a choice to not have one. What would be really nice is say, how they do things in California with auto insurance. Its mandatory... but you still have a wide variety of *******s... i mean insurance agencies to pick from ;) lol.

    I'd like to see neuroscience's data on people paying for their heart transplants however...
  7. Jun 9, 2005 #6
    it comes down to it who gets an organ when it becomes available..the private health care or public health care? Is it wher ethe person donating decidess? So then you can pay for your organs...and the people who need it the most or first ont eh list don't get priority? So money dictates whose life is more important.
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2005
  8. Jun 9, 2005 #7


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    Please rephrase that to make sense. You said..

    and didnt prove it. There are lists of peopel in need of different organs, first come first serve... not who pays more money. I also think you made the assumption somewhere that people who get organs dont deserve them and dont need them....
  9. Jun 9, 2005 #8
    you canadian? its all over the news. where someguy doesn't want to wait inline so he wants to pay for private health care to bypass the line.
  10. Jun 9, 2005 #9


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    Nope, American... show me the article, sounds disgusting.

    Actually not disgusting... if its a life and death thing... i can understand why he says that. If i were on hte verge of death, i wouldnt care what everyone thought of me if it meant a good image means death. Thankfully ... or hopefully he wont get special treatement... but im sure we can all understand why someone might say such things.
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2005
  11. Jun 13, 2005 #10
    there is no I in country
  12. Jun 13, 2005 #11
    Heal thyself, snowback!

    The greatwhite northern Hoser is notorious for its self-healing abilities. What happened to you? Crying to the "doctor" or the "chemo-machine" for help isn't the answer. Duct-tape is the universal solution!

    Take-off, eh.
  13. Jun 25, 2005 #12
    i think in a two way system the idea is that private health care is a bonus. like it provides care that the government dosnt have anything to do with. you pay for money to make to treatment available that otherwise wouldnt be. if you need an MRI scan, in private health care you could pay to buy one and reduce the line-up a great deal. its more money put into the health care system

    this definatly has it's good sides when you look at the short term gains but i think there would be a brain-drain to the private sector and the public funded areas would be under staffed in compairison. there is also an issue of people who are paying for their own private health care not wanting to pay for the public system as well.

    iv also heard that treatment costs more in the usa then in canada, like it costs a hospital more money to give someone advil or a bed for 2 weeks or a CT scan in the usa then in canada Because of the way the privitized system in the usa works
  14. Jun 25, 2005 #13


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    That is absolutely true here in the USA. Our health costs are through the roof because of the privatization of medicine. It's a viscious cycle of high costs being passed on to those willing and able to pay from those unable or unwilling to pay for their medical services. I believe the malpractice insurance that doctors must carry also contributes to the high costs, as well as the lawsuits.

    IMO, I think a public health system in any country is good because it sorts out the real needs of those with real issues from those who run to the doctor for a cold, like they tend to do here in the USA. I know one family (in the US) here) who runs their children to the doctor for such minor things, and their children are on several different medications (for issues like constipation for example). This is a family that eats out constantly to pizza and McDonald's instead of focusing on a well balanced diet with fruit and vegetables. *Steps off soap box* Yes, our health system in the USA is severely in need of change.
  15. Jun 26, 2005 #14
    There was an interesting article in the WSJ in the last week or two about how anesthesiologists went from paying one of the highest malpractice insurance rates in the country back in the 80's to paying one of the lowest now. At some point, their society decided enough was enough, and really starting funding training practices which focused on patient safety and reduction of common errors. This made a big difference in mortality rates, and thus fewer malpractice suits arose, dropping their insurance rates tremendously.

    From other articles I've read, there is still some ways to go in other specialities like surgery to reduce medical error. Part of it is due to doctor ego.

    On a separate note, I've read about Americans taking medical "vacations" in countries like India, where one pays far less for medical care. So making the American system Canadian would probably just result in wealthy Americans going abroad. There really aren't any easy answers to any of these issues, honestly.
  16. Jun 26, 2005 #15
    I don't understand the logic here, quite frankly. If anything, a private system discourages frivolous visits more than a public system since it is more likely to force you to pay for those visits. Or at least reconsider those visits due to economic factors.

    The waiting time is a separate issue, IMO. A public healthcare system and a short waiting time are not necessarily mutually exclusive. But even with long waiting times, it's not as simple as an issue of cutting down on frivolous visits, since a non-trivial number of scheduled visits are not actually frivolous, and those people are adversely affected by long waiting times.

    Here's an analogy - let's say the government forced the pharmacies to make all cold medication on the shelves free, though buyers could only take 2 per visit. What would happen? A disaster. A lot of people would run to the pharmacy and grab some medicine because it was free. Some would do it multiple times just because they could and had the patience. Most wouldn't even need the medicine. It is much more likely that those with colds and actually needed the medicine would find that they would have to wait a long time to get the medicine either because the lines at the pharmacy were long, or the pharmacies were sold out and had to reorder.
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