This is an E-mail that is floating around, so I am not 100% sure about the validity of it.  I will say that many of the "arguments" are opinion-based, or are about personal experience, rather than cold hard, indisputable statistics.  However, after the SCHIP debate, I seemed to be marked as an evil troll for not wanting all the little children to have access to medical care (which is so not how I feel, but that’s how it was apparently taken) , and I decided to do a little more digging into the whole "universal health care" thing.  This E-mail gave me a good jump-off point because Canada has already established universal health care. 

Hey Guys;  I seen on the news up here in Canada where Hillary Clinton introduced
her new health care plan.  Something similar to what we have in Canada .  I also
heard that Michael Moore was raving about the health care up here in Canada in his
latest movie.  As your friend and someone who lives with the Canada health care
plan I thought I would give you some facts about this great medical plan that we
have in Canada .

Plus a few additions from me…D

          The next post will contain a positive viewpoint to try to keep things fair.

First of all:

1) The health care plan in Canada is not free.  We pay a premium every month of
$96. for my wife and I to be covered.  (for my daughter and her two children, she
pays $148.00 per month.) Sounds great eh.  What they don’t tell you is how much
we pay in taxes to keep the health care system afloat.  I am personally in the 55%
tax bracket.  Yes 55% of my earnings go to taxes.  (A great deal more, as the other
taxes have not been taken into consideration) A large portion of that and I am not
sure of the exact amount goes directly to health care our #1 expense.

2) I would not classify what we have as health care plan,  it is more like a health
diagnosis system.  You can get into to see a doctor quick enough (If you can find
one and be accepted) so he can tell you "yes indeed you are sick or you need
an operation" but now the challenge becomes getting treated or operated on.
We have waiting lists out the ying yang some as much as 2 years down the road, or

3)  Rather than fix what is wrong with you the usual tactic in Canada is to prescribe
drugs.  Have a pain here is a drug to take- not what is causing the pain and why.
No time for checking you out because it is more important to move as many patients
thru as possible each hour for Government re-imbursement. Was in a Dr. office with
friend and after 12 minutes was told his "time" was up.  Another friend,
her Dr. has sign up saying, "Time Limit, 10 Minutes per patient".

4)  Many Canadians do not have a family Doctor.  (I have not seen a Dr. since 1998
and on Thursday asked If I could see a Dr. and was told that I was living "out
of their catchment area" and ask’d who made those laws, she said the "Federal
Government".)  GREAT FREE SYSTEM! 

5) Don’t require emergency treatment as you may wait for hours in the emergency
room waiting for treatment .   (Have waited in emerg. with friend and heard somebody
say they were there since 11 p.m. the previous night this was 4 p.m. in the afternoon)

6)  My wife’s dad cut his hand on a power saw a few weeks back and it required
that his hand be put in a splint – to our surprise we had to pay $125. for a splint
because it is not covered under health care plus we have to pay $60. for each visit
for him to check it out each week.

7) My wife’s cousin was diagnosed with a heart blockage.  Put on a waiting list
.  Died before he could get treatment   (Same happened to a friend of ours)  Another
friend was on a cruise, had a heart attack, was off loaded in Costa Rica, Dr there
had to call Canada after diagnosis and was told if you operate on more than 2 blockages
you will not be compensated (paid)  He had 4 blockages.  Had to wait a further year
in order to clear the other blockages before they would do anything.  Subsequently
he’s had a pace maker put in

8) Government allots so many operations per year  When that is done no more operations,
unless you go to your local newspaper and plead your case and embarrass the government
then money suddenly appears.  Knee and hip replacements certainly fall into this
category, regardless of one’s situation, regardless of the 2+ year wait.  My
husband was to have a knee replacement … they scrapped the chipped bone, left
him rubbing bone on bone, then he had to get a brace costing $1, 500.00 which is
not effective enough, reduced his  life style dramatically.

9)The Government takes great pride in telling us how much more they are increasing
the funding for health care but waiting lists never get shorter  Government just
keeps throwing money at the problem but it never goes away.  But they are good at
finding new ways to tax us, but they don’t call it a tax anymore it is now a
user fee.

10) My mother needs an operation for a blockage in her leg but because she is a
smoker they will not do it.  Despite her and my father paying into the health care
system all these years.  My Mom is 80 years of age.  Now there is talk that maybe
we should not treat fat and obese people either because they are a drain on the
health care system.  Let me see now, what we want in Canada is a health care system
for healthy people only.  That should reduce our health care costs.

11) Forget getting a second opinion, what you see is what you get.

12) I can spend what money I have left after taxes on booze, cigarettes, junk food
and anything else that could kill me but I am not allowed by law to spend my money
on getting an operation I need because that would be jumping the queue.  I must
wait my turn except if I am a hockey player or athlete then I can get looked at
right away.  Go figger.  Where else in the world can you spend money to kill yourself
but not allowed to spend money to get healthy .  Alternative methods are greatly
discouraged with posters in Dr. offices lauding the "dangers" of herbs,

13) Oh did I mention that immigrants are covered automatically at tax payer expense
having never contributed a dollar to the system and pay no premiums.@#$%^&*()_

14) Oh yeh we now give free needles to drug users to try and keep them healthy.
Wouldn’t want a sickly druggie breaking into your house and stealing your things
But people with diabetes who pay into the health care system have to pay for their
needles because it is not covered but the health care system.  Then there is also
a new Diabetic drug which is easier on the system, but if you can’t pay for
it, you can not have it regardless of your health.

I send this out not looking for sympathy but as the election looms in the states
you will be hearing more and more about universal health care down there and the
advocates will be pointing to Canada .  I just want to make sure that you hear the
truth about health care up here and have some food for thought and informed questions
to ask when broached with this subject.

Step wisely and don’t make the same mistakes Canada has made..