Thursday, February 25, 2010

Canada: You Can Buy MRIs for Dogs, Not People

"Canada is the only country other than Cuba and North Korea to ban private health insurance and private medical care. The prohibition is viewed as bizarre in other nations with universal health care. Sweden has long allowed private insurance for elective services. In Australia, private hospitals provide a third of the nation's capacity. In Germany and the Netherlands, anyone above a certain income threshold is allowed to leave the public system.

In Canada, the ban on private insurance results in truly loopy law. Dr. Sheldon Elman, the personal physician for Liberal Prime Minister Paul Martin, says the system is "disastrously terrible" in key areas. "You can buy an MRI for your dog and you cannot buy it for your daughter," he told the Montreal Gazette."

~
John Fund in the Wall Street Journal

12 Comments:

At 2/25/2010 9:14 AM, Blogger Colin said...

Speaking of government-run health care, how about this story out of the UK?

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1253438/Mid-Staffordshire-NHS-hospital-routinely-neglected-patients.html

 
At 2/25/2010 9:58 AM, Blogger W.E. Heasley said...

If memory serves me correctly, Canada was one of the first counties to allow pet insurance. Pet insurance is now available in the USA. The policy is modeled on the old medical expense plan (schedule of coverage with limits) that was a predecessor to major medical insurance.

 
At 2/25/2010 10:21 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You should explain why you can't buy these services.

What would happen is that doctors or hospitals would tack on a surcharge--get money from the government and then from the patient, so in the end, there would be price increases and the poor would pay through the nose.

The reality is that they get the services today. Canadians rank their healthcare system better than US citizens do as represented in Gallup polls.

 
At 2/25/2010 10:31 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Canadians rank their healthcare system better than US citizens do as represented in Gallup polls.

Yeah, yeah, and most North Koreans believe that they live in a workers paradise. These polls are meaningless since they are not based on a comparison of service. Most Canadians have no knowledge of the U.S. health care system outside what Michael Moore feeds them. Unless, of course, they suffer a real injury or illness that requires specialized care. Again, give us the links to the stories of Americans seeking health care in Canada.

 
At 2/25/2010 10:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I lived in Canada for a few years. While their healthcare system isn't terrible, it's not very good either. I'd prefer the current American system to the Canadian system anyday.

Some Canadians think their healthcare system is pretty good because after all it's "free" (except for that silly little 15% sales tax and that tax on...). But the truth is their actual healthcare is inferior to what most Americans have.

When the government outlaws buying private healthcare it's little wonder they also need to outlaw handguns (as the Canadian government does).

 
At 2/25/2010 10:59 AM, Anonymous geoih said...

Quote from Anonymous: ...so in the end, there would be price increases and the poor would pay through the nose."

So, it's better if nobody gets the service at any price (unless of course you're the Prime Minister of some Canadian Province and you can afford to fly off to the US to have it done).

Guess what? Health care costs money. It doesn't fall from the sky, or grow out of the ground, or even flow out of the mouths of politicians. It comes from other people who expect to be paid for their services. All of the man made laws in the world will not change economic facts. Whining about the poor will not change it. If you want to help the poor, give them some of your money so they can get the services you think they should have.

 
At 2/25/2010 11:08 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here is a gallup poll of OECD countries on satisfaction of healthcare systems.

http://www.gallup.com/poll/122393/oecd-countries-universal-healthcare-gets-high-marks.aspx

 
At 2/25/2010 11:18 AM, Anonymous gettingrational said...

I was not able to read the complete WSJ article because off the subscription requirement. So I am not sure if it says the MRIs are impossible to get privately in Canada but the PM doctor's quote infers that. With that in mind I post this:

Canadian Magnetic Imaging is a private MRI clinic.

"CMI also offers immediate MRI access for all persoanl injury claimants on a contingent basis, so if the patient does not recover from their insurer their scan is free.

I am not endorsing or promoting Canadian style health care but only noteing that private MRIs are available.

 
At 2/25/2010 11:42 AM, Blogger Colin said...

http://reason.com/blog/2010/02/25/reasontv-treat-me-like-a-dogmd

 
At 2/25/2010 11:49 AM, Blogger W.E. Heasley said...

Here you go! Petplan is the world’s largest pet insurance provider!

http://www.gopetplan.com/index.html?engine=google&keyword=ncpet+insurance+quote&match_type=&gclid=COToqsr4jaACFZZg2godI3gWeg

 
At 2/25/2010 11:58 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am not endorsing or promoting Canadian style health care but only noteing that private MRIs are available.

They are available because the Canadian Supreme Court struck down certain prohibitions against private insurance and services. The Court found that their system was dysfunctional stating, "access to waiting lists is not access to health care".

 
At 2/25/2010 9:41 PM, Blogger randian said...

Speaking of government-run health care, how about this story out of the UK?

Hardly surprising when reducing costs by eliminating care is the whole point of the NHS. There is also the matter of NHS doctors being unaccountable civil service employees, just like those who give such great service at your local DMV.

 

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