Saturday, June 28, 2008
Canada's Healthcare In Ruins
Claude Castonguay, the godfather of Canada's socialized healthcare, now says the Canadian system is in ruins.
His answer to fix it? Are you sitting down? Are you comfortable? Is your heart beating at a normal, relaxed rate?
His answer is...
...privatize Canada's healthcare system! (GAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAASP!)
"Socialized healthcare? Why, dat's just crazy-talk!"
From Investor's Business Daily:
Back in the 1960s, Castonguay chaired a Canadian government committee studying health reform and recommended that his home province of Quebec — then the largest and most affluent in the country — adopt government-administered health care, covering all citizens through tax levies.
The government followed his advice, leading to his modern-day moniker: "the father of Quebec medicare." Even this title seems modest; Castonguay's work triggered a domino effect across the country, until eventually his ideas were implemented from coast to coast.
Four decades later, as the chairman of a government committee reviewing Quebec health care this year, Castonguay concluded that the system is in "crisis."
"We thought we could resolve the system's problems by rationing services or injecting massive amounts of new money into it," says Castonguay. But now he prescribes a radical overhaul: "We are proposing to give a greater role to the private sector so that people can exercise freedom of choice."
Castonguay advocates contracting out services to the private sector, going so far as suggesting that public hospitals rent space during off-hours to entrepreneurial doctors. He supports co-pays for patients who want to see physicians. Castonguay, the man who championed public health insurance in Canada, now urges for the legalization of private health insurance.
What would drive a man like Castonguay to reconsider his long-held beliefs? Try a health care system so overburdened that hundreds of thousands in need of medical attention wait for care, any care; a system where people in towns like Norwalk, Ontario, participate in lotteries to win appointments with the local family doctor.
Years ago, Canadians touted their health care system as the best in the world; today, Canadian health care stands in ruinous shape.
Sick with ovarian cancer, Sylvia de Vires, an Ontario woman afflicted with a 13-inch, fluid-filled tumor weighing 40 pounds, was unable to get timely care in Canada. She crossed the American border to Pontiac, Mich., where a surgeon removed the tumor, estimating she could not have lived longer than a few weeks more.
Canada isn't the only country facing a government health care crisis. Britain's system, once the postwar inspiration for many Western countries, is similarly plagued. Both countries trail the U.S. in five-year cancer survival rates, transplantation outcomes and other measures.
To what country do kings, queen, royalty, celebrities and heads of state travel to, to receive medical treatment? Do they seek treatment in Canada, Cuba, the U.K.? Or do they travel to the United States? In what country did Ted Kennedy receive treatment for his tumor?
Do yourself a huge favor and read the entire IBD story. Become informed on the myriad of downsides and problems associated with socialized healthcare. Don't let the Democrats pull the wool over your eyes. The United States has the best healthcare system in the world. Does it need some reform? Yes it does. Does it need to be "socialized"? No, not now, not ever.
Besides, it's a FAILED SYSTEM big time.
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