Romanow Commission

Fall 2005 CSANews Issue 56  |   Posted date : May 23, 2007.Back to list

Bird talk - Le Jaseur
Dear Bird Talk,

I appreciate the excellent service my wife and I obtain from our private insurance with Medipac for coverage during our winter stay in Florida. However, we are also grateful for the fact that back home in Canada, we are also protected on a daily basis by our public system of health care, paid for by our tax dollars, and at no time being a cause for financial concerns should a health emergency arise in the family.

True enough, there has been a deterioration in hospital services in Canada during the past 10 years, owing to the fact that our then- Finance Minister slashed the healthcare budget by $5 billion, causing the shutdown of numerous hospitals all across Canada and downsizing in most sectors. Wait-times naturally increased for elective surgery. And yet the system continues to provide decent and dignified service for most citizens, which accounts for their support and that of the Romanow Commission on the Future of Health Care in Canada. This is not a curse as some of your correspondents see it.

Yours truly,
Samuel Levy, Ph.D.

Response:
Most of the stories we hear or read are from those people that have encountered difficulty with our health care system, for whatever reason. There are thousands of others that have had wonderful experiences and have received caring, and even life-saving, results. But we believe that, as a country, Canada can do better. Recently, the Canadian Medical Association, for the first time ever, stated that waiting times for medical treatment in Canada are unacceptable. These are our doctors saying that they are unable to provide proper care. They now believe that citizens should be permitted access to treatment at private "for profit" facilities within Canada or, alternatively, in the United States. Payment for such services would still be provided by our GHIP programs at the same rate levels that are paid for service in a public facility. This is not the two-tier system that politicians have made us fear, but simply more facilities, more advanced diagnostic machines and more public access. We have to stop the indirect health rationing that is inherent in our system. Yes, it will cost more in the long run, but when it comes to your own personal health, we really do not think that cost is much of an issue.

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