Federal Superannuates Insurance Coverage

Summer 2007 CSANews Issue 63  |   Posted date : Aug 07, 2007.Back to list

Bird talk - Le Jaseur
Dear Bird Talk,

It is my understanding from information in a letter to "Bird Talk" included in the latest issue of CSANews, that retired federal public servants have had their medical coverage increased from $100,000 to $500,000 for a continuous 40-day period. Why should they be treated so differently from other retired people? They earned excellent wages during their working years, receiving better-than-average benefits and are now having those benefits increased even further when others are not, and at the expense of those who are not so covered. What is so special about them?

Everyone is supposed to have medical benefits of equal value as is the case with medical expenses paid through taxes by the various provincial governments. Why, then, should the retired federal public servants receive anything over what others do, never mind the 400% increase in their out-of-country insurance from $100,000 to $500,000. Our taxes ultimately become higher, to pay for this increased coverage, but we get absolutely no benefit whatsoever from it.

Medical expenses levied while in the United States, or other foreign countries, should be paid by the Canadian government whether through the various provinces or outright by the Feds. This has not been the case for many years now, with the province of Ontario (other provincial governments are likely the same) absorbing only an extremely small portion of the actual costs incurred - in most cases, less than 10% of the actual cost involved. Yet, retired federal public servants (and no doubt current public servants) get free coverage to them and NOW up to $500,000. This reduces the amount of outside coverage they must pay to firms like Medipac to further enhance their protection while away. This is discrimination in its worst form by governments which claim they do not discriminate against anyone, nor do they (presumably) tolerate discrimination. We are paying, or will be paying, higher taxes for this clear case of discrimination against us, to cover this increased coverage, amounting to 400%, for the retired public servants.

Your comments relative to the above and pursuit of the changes to benefits for all other retired people would be most appreciated.

Respectfully submitted,
R.W. McClure

And on behalf of: Alex & Mary Byrne, Dan & Barbara Stanfield, and Frank & Daphne Hellard - all of whom are fortunate enough to spend 5+/- months in Indiantown, Florida.

Response:
Ed: The federal government retirees DO have it pretty good. The thing that amazes me is that they should have increased the plan limits to $2 million, not just $500,000. These retirees still have to buy additional private coverage to be safe and secure. And… it is only good for 40 days, not the five or six months which the traditional snowbird needs. Of one thing I am totally certain and this is that the Canadian government plans will never again just pay any bill that they are sent by U.S. health-care providers.

Canada was a joke in the days before 1992. The U.S. hospitals would send a bill and it would just be paid. Hmmm, they said, and the next time they doubled the same bill, and it still got paid. Then they started sending limos and private jets to pick up patients in Canada, and they still got paid; even for the limo and Lear jet costs. That is government at its worst! And we poor snowbirds got ground up to dust when our governments “fixed” the problem. We believe that the provincial governments owe us the same medical protection away, as here in Canada, not more, not less. This is a law… it is called the Canada Health Act. We also pay for year-round health care, so why are they stealing part of our money for other purposes.
There will always be a need for private medical insurance when we travel, but it would cost less if the governments obeyed their own law. We are fighting and getting some traction across Canada and we will not just go away, Mr. Government. Do the right thing!!!!

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