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Old 11-19-2010, 10:13 AM   #61
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Ditto, if the Dems moved up the benefits to 2011, they wouldn't have half the problems their having. Before you do COBRA, you should check to see if you can get individual insurance first, because it would be better to lock in coverage IF you can.
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You're right, they'd have double the amount of problems when everyone's rates went from $500/month to $1500/month.
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Old 11-30-2010, 08:31 AM   #62
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Our healthcare system puts profit before people life. That's what business is all about. This is fundamental flaw of the system. Unless a universal basic healthcare system is in place, we'll continue to have run away costs and more people without access to affordable healthcare.
The US is the only developed country that does not have universal health care !
I wonder what it's like if Canada did not have universal health care ...
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Old 11-30-2010, 04:49 PM   #63
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The US is the only developed country that does not have universal health care !
I wonder what it's like if Canada did not have universal health care ...
We have been informed by our politicians that you Canadians are miserable, but just don't have enough sense to realize it.
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Old 11-30-2010, 04:55 PM   #64
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We have been informed by our politicians that you Canadians are miserable, but just don't have enough sense to realize it.
I love that!!! Exactly, we actually don't know why exactly, but we trust our politicians and do not like Canadian (or for the same Australian and others) health care systems.
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Old 11-30-2010, 08:44 PM   #65
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Health care has never been a big issue for Canadians as everyone has access to health care covered by the provincial governments.

The cost is high to be hospitalized in the US, that's why Canadians sometimes top up their medical coverage when they travel to the US.
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Old 11-30-2010, 09:02 PM   #66
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For the vast majority of people, there is no amount of hard work and saving that will pay for, say, cancer treatment, which can very easily run into 7 figures.

Peter
Cancer treatment is also covered by the health care system in Canada, but there are some "new" drugs that are not approved by Health Canada yet then the patients will have to pay out of pocket.

It is more comfortable to ER in Canada because one doesn't have to worry about the 7 figure cost of treatment, it's like a time bomb.

I once tried a few websites for quotes to top up the Canadian coverage for 6 months (snowbird in the States), I kind of recall it costs about $300 to 400 for 6 months top up coverage, and depending on age, it increases to $600-800, then the next age group is over $1200, then $2700 ... something like that, based on no pre existing condition though.
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Old 11-30-2010, 09:06 PM   #67
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Health care has never been a big issue for Canadians as everyone has access to health care covered by the provincial governments.
You guys have provincial governments to provide your healthcare? That's great! I thought that maybe it was provided by taxpayers.

Canada is really fortunate to have a neighbor whose medical system provides research money that develops new drugs and medical equipment that can then be purchased for use in Canada at cut rate prices. And, any Canadian who needs treatment and can pay for it can drive right across the border and get the world's most advanced medical care. US citizens don't have such a neighbor.

If I were Canadian, I'd probably enjoy the free ride along with my countrymen, realizing that the Canadian system works (to the degree it does) in no small part due to the spillover benefits that come from my southern neighbor.
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Old 11-30-2010, 09:22 PM   #68
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Well, money from the provincial government of course comes from the taxpayers.

As far as I know, doctors in Canada gets lower pay than their US counterparts. That might explain one of the reasons why it costs so much in the US.

Canadians also pay higher income taxes to fund all these social programmes such as universal health care, dental care (for the poor such as those on social assistance).

One of the reasons that the Canadian health care system works is we have the Canada Health Act (complicated). In short, the provincial governments regulate the charges of doctors, item by item, from check up to procedures in the hospitals. On the other hand, doctors in the US make much more money than Canadian doctors, that might explain why it's so expensive to pay for the medicare.

Every time we travel to the States, we top up our medical insurance as we know if something happens to us such as accidents, it will drive us broke ... And we simply can't afford it !

I think the US has a great system overall such as R&D, but for some reason I still think health care reform in the US is the right step, though it is world's away from Canada in terms of univeral health care.
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Old 11-30-2010, 10:09 PM   #69
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You guys have provincial governments to provide your healthcare? That's great! I thought that maybe it was provided by taxpayers.

Canada is really fortunate to have a neighbor whose medical system spends billions on advertisements and provides research money that develops expensive new drugs of marginal benefit and expensive medical equipment that is overused but can then be purchased for use in Canada at cut rate market prices. And, any Canadian who needs treatment and can pay for it can drive right across the border and get the world's most advanced expensive and inefficient medical care. US citizens don't have such a neighbor. (Actually you too could drive over the border and get care, less expensively, in the Great White North, although you might have to wait unless it is truly an emergency)

If I were Canadian, I'd probably enjoy the free ride along with my countrymen, realizing that the Canadian system works (to the degree it does) in no small part due to the spillover benefits that come from my southern neighbor. And that goes for the other 37 countries who provide better quality health care than the US does for their citizens...
There, fixed some of it for you.

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Old 11-30-2010, 11:52 PM   #70
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If I were Canadian, I'd probably enjoy the free ride along with my countrymen, realizing that the Canadian system works (to the degree it does) in no small part due to the spillover benefits that come from my southern neighbor. And that goes for the other 37 countries who provide better quality health care than the US does for their citizens...
I agree, they all benefit from the spiilover of new developments that come from the US health care "system."

There's no doubt that the US health care "system" is very wasteful. There's also no doubt that the US system provides considerable tangible benefits to Canadians and many other countries. Once our system is more like theirs and the profit motive is reduced, I'd expect the pace of US medical innovation to closely parallel Canada's. And Mexico's.
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Old 12-01-2010, 05:56 AM   #71
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Canadians in the States are so "afraid" of going to the hospitals in the States because as soon as the hospitals find out we have top up medical insurance, the hospitals treat us like "king", no exegeration here at all !

With just a minor medical need, the hospital would do a series of tests (covered by the top up medical insurance), and insists us to stay longer for "observation", also covered by the top up medical insurance.

The matter of fact is the US economy is profit driven capitalism whereas Canada is a mixed economy where social programmes are provided by the governments through tax payers.

No wonder the healthcare in the States is so expensive: The rich get better care whereas the poor are left to die ...

Do you know how expensive to care for a patient who has kidney failure that needs peritoneal or hemo dialysis ? In Canada, we have a health network that will take care of patients, and after the surgery, depending on the choice (peritoneal or hemo), if the patient chose peritoneal analysis, the family will get training and medical supply will be shipped to the patient's home; If for hemo dialysis, the patient will visit the hospital twice a week for the hospital to perform hemo dialysis for him/her.

Plus the patients will get regular scheduled blood test at the hospital or some satellite clinic.

All of the above care (and others that I didn't write up such as the health care system in Canada will send some one to the patient's home to perform peritoneal dialysis at noon, hygiene care twice a week if needed) costs the patient nothing for life.
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Old 12-01-2010, 06:11 AM   #72
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The words "free ride" or "spillover benefit" are debatable here !

There are only a very tiny portion of Canadians who would cover over to the States for treatment, and they pay the market price, so do other people who come from all over the world.

If the hospitals don't want to "benefit" Canadians and other people, don't want to give a smaller number of Canadians and other people "free ride", they (the hospital) can simply shut the door, not accept new patients !

There's no "free ride" or "spillover benefit", it is market driven. If I could get treatment in hospital in the States for free, I would definitely call it a "free ride".

It's the system in the States that don't look after their own citizen ... universally ... and it's time the system needs fixed.
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Old 12-01-2010, 06:56 AM   #73
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.............

It's the system in the States that don't look after their own citizen ... universally ... and it's time the system needs fixed.
Not to worry. We just had an election and it is going to be fixed right away.
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Old 12-01-2010, 07:33 AM   #74
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Not to worry. We just had an election and it is going to be fixed right away.
I am seeing light at the end of the tunnel for the gereral public in the US. But it will take time to get it fixed, not right way !

Here are the problems:
- Profit driven hospitals in existence
- Much higher costs to get the same medical care compared to Canada
- Unnecessary procedures performed in the hospitals for extra profit
- Lower income tax in the States, meaning lower revenue for the government
- Large population: 9 times more population than Canada
- Bigger budget for defence

Why it works in Canada:
- Non profit, governments run hospitals, no exception
- Lower costs per procedures compared to the States
- No unnecessary procedures will be performed (Canadians are not treated like "kings" as they are in hospitals in the States)
- Higher income tax, meaning higher revenue for the governments
- Population: 9 times less
- Smaller budget for defence (this might be the spillover benefit from the States as we don't have to spend $ on nuclear weapons ...)

So, I think it will take time to get it fixed ...
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Old 12-01-2010, 08:17 AM   #75
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I am seeing light at the end of the tunnel for the gereral public in the US. But it will take time to get it fixed, not right way !
It's the headlight of a train and it's coming straight at us...
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Old 12-01-2010, 09:11 AM   #76
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Canadians don't normally purchase health insurance within the country as it is covered by the governments.

Could someone let me know how much it costs in the States per month or per year ? Say for a single person or a family, and what if the person has kidney failure that needs hemodialysis (it might costs a 5 figure anually to keep the patient alive or he/she will die within 3 months without dialysis) ?

For a family of 4, healthy, does it cost $400/month ?

If one of the family members has heart problem, will the insurance deny to insure that person ?
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Old 12-01-2010, 11:03 AM   #77
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I agree, they all benefit from the spiilover of new developments that come from the US health care "system."

There's no doubt that the US health care "system" is very wasteful. There's also no doubt that the US system provides considerable tangible benefits to Canadians and many other countries. Once our system is more like theirs and the profit motive is reduced, I'd expect the pace of US medical innovation to closely parallel Canada's. And Mexico's.
As long as it doesn't become as bad as Europe. Barbering and leeches! Not a single pharmaceutical company on the entire continent!

Online 'discussions' like this remind me of this old 'map'. A bit insular...
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Old 12-01-2010, 11:55 AM   #78
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I agree, they all benefit from the spiilover of new developments that come from the US health care "system."

There's no doubt that the US health care "system" is very wasteful. There's also no doubt that the US system provides considerable tangible benefits to Canadians and many other countries. Once our system is more like theirs and the profit motive is reduced, I'd expect the pace of US medical innovation to closely parallel Canada's. And Mexico's.
I think you overestimate the developments coming from the US. Many countries have active research and development programs, both private and public, that provide breakthroughs in medicine, the US does not have a monopoly (for a rough estimate look at the Nobel Medicine prize winners All Nobel Prizes in Physiology or Medicine). Where the US fails miserably is in determining a cost:benefit for the research done. Here Big Pharma will spend billions to develop and market a new "flavour" of a drug to replace the old one that is going off patent. With an aggressive marketing campaign touting the (questionable) benefits of the new "flavour" they have a new blockbuster that makes them a fortune with little, if any, benefit to the health of the population. Meanwhile Canada and everyone else is perfectly content to spend pennies on the dollar to continue prescribing the old flavour. The money can then be better spent on something like say...vaccinating everyone against Whooping Cough" California Has 4,017 Cases Of Whooping Cough (pertussis) And 9 Deaths, Family Warns Whooping Cough Dangers After Infant Son's Death - NewsOn6.com - Tulsa, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports - KOTV.com |.

Another example is procedures. A number of studies have demonstrated that for those with stable angina maximizing medical treatment (blood pressure, cholesterol) and lifestyle (smoking cessation and weight loss) provided similar outcomes (death, disability) as doing catheterization and angioplasty. The former is cheaper and has many other tangible and intangible benefits yet there has been no significant change in practice here in the US.

Here's an example that directly impacts my practice. I'm sure everyone has heard of the "stroke emergency" touting how if treated quickly with thrombolytics a stroke may be reversible. This is true but for every person exhibiting stroke like symptoms only a very small fraction are having a stroke, are treatable and only a portion of those have any benefit, the others don't recover or the thrombolytic made their stroke worse. In order to make this possible we now rush hundreds of patients to ER's putting the patients, their family, the ambulance crews and general public at risk. They bypass the patients usual hospital to come to a stroke center where we might treat a dozen patients a year out of a thousand or more brought in. No cost:benefit has been done, nor likely will be done. This is now the standard of care which we must all practice by. This is now the fastest increasing area of malpractice litigation in Emergency Medicine. We now get sued if we give TPA (and there is a bad outcome) and if we don't (because in our clinical judgment the risk exceeds the benefit).

And finally to equate Canada's R&D with Mexico is ludicrous. Canada has an equivalent to the NIH that funds basic science research as well as collaborates with industry About National Research Council - NRC-CNRC.

There is much to admire and be proud of in US R&D (I was a participant until training as a physician) but it does not carry the rest of the world on its back.

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Old 12-01-2010, 12:20 PM   #79
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As long as it doesn't become as bad as Europe. Barbering and leeches! Not a single pharmaceutical company on the entire continent!

Online 'discussions' like this remind me of this old 'map'. A bit insular...
Or, flight procedures in Guatemala!



Yep, plenty of big, profitable pharmaceutical companies in Europe, and they do important research. And their sales in the US (and especially margin, which provides money and motivation for R&D) eclipse their sales in Europe.

GSK (1st Qtr 2009)
US (population: 308 million): Income from sales=2.3 Billion GBP,
Europe (population: 501 million, EU only): Income from sales =1.8 Billion GBP

So, this European drug company is highly dependent on US sales. And, once US spending on pharmaceuticals gets to the "proper" European level, there might be some impact on the ability of these companies to conduct R&D. And, once the money flow from the US slows, Europe (and Canada, etc) will see drug prices climb. But, we'll still have the leaches . . .
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