Beware single-payer

“In A Short Course in Brain Surgery, filmmaker Stuart Browning shows the callousness of ‘single-payer’, government-run health care systems as practiced in Ontario, Canada. His film highlights the plight of Lindsay McCreith, an Ontario man with a cancerous brain tumor who went to Buffalo, NY to receive the timely medical care that is rationed in his home country.”

Required viewing.

Update:
They also have a 25-minute short film detailing the realities of Canada’s single-payer system.

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  • cdclled

    I would like to see Congress attempt to implement this in the US. We do spend a greater percentage of our GDP on health care than any other country, and although some of it is unnecessary spending, people have grown accustomed to the level of care provided here. Patients feel entitled to the routine MRI and CT scans for minor problems. American society will reject any system that takes this comfort away from them. The funny part is that it will be the lawyers, not the physicians’ lobby, that will keep this from happening.

  • Anonymous

    Seems pretty biased to me, nice add for timely health care…that’s about all I get from this. More people have access to care in Canada, period.

  • Anonymous

    Definitely biased. Not to say that some people don’t EVER fall through the cracks, but I find this story bizarre– I’m practicing in Ontario, and I’ve never had a problem getting my patients timely diagnosis and care for life-threatening problems. Just last week I ordered an MRI on someone with chronic back pain, and she’s scheduled to get it in early January… less than a month later. Why would a much more urgent problem require a 4 month wait?

    I don’t deny that the Canadian system has problems– but don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater. Our problem is that we’re too America-centric. We don’t look beyond our own continent for alternatives. There are plenty of models that cost less (in terms of percentage of GDP or spending per person) and have higher rates of population satisfaction that either the Canadian OR U.S. models.

    The American system is undoubtedly better for the rich. The Canadian system is better for the population as a whole. I could make more money in the American system, but I prefer it here, where money doesn’t have such a dramatic impact on health.

  • The Independent Urologist

    How about the millions in this country without any insurance who have tumors, diabetes, HTN, breast cancer etc whose care is rationed because they can’t pay. Please, our system is good for healthy people with excellent health insurance, so long as they don’t lose their jobs when they get sick, and hence the insurance. Our system has many, many problems that could easily be sensationalized for the gain of any one special interest.

  • emmy

    My brother-in-law has no health insurance and went with public health care here for treatment of his lung cancer. The treatment he got was comparable with the treatment that I received for my breast cancer while I have excellent insurance. The difference is that I’m still paying off the deductables and co-pays and he’s done with his. I know it’s not always the case here, but it is sometimes.

  • Anonymous

    “Just last week I ordered an MRI on someone with chronic back pain, and she’s scheduled to get it in early January… less than a month later.”

    Less than a month later? Is that something to be proud of? If pts here need a MRI, it’s done within, at absolute most, a few days. The idea of waiting months to have one done is absurd. Having health insurance does not require one to be “rich”, nor does a lack of health insurance mean you are left out to die in the street. The whole waiting lists thing reminds me of the NYT article about the Medicare pts who have nothing better to do than hop around from doctor to doctor because it doesn’t cost them anything. The more free you make something the more expensive it’ll become.