Canadian VS. American Health Plan - page 3

Which is better? I've heard stories about each system. Living in the U.S. and being part of the health system I see how our system runs. I'm limited in my knowledge of the Canadian Health Care... Read More

  1. by   canoehead
    Perhaps Nova Scotia is not as well funded as other provinces. My mother was chronically ill for 6 years and we were pleasantly surprised when she was able to get an appointment with any specialist in less than 2 months- average wait was about 4 months. I also have an uncle that died on the waiting list for a quadruple CABG, after 4 months he died 3 days before being admitted. The wait for joint replacement surgery is over a year, and by the time our elderly get in they have become so debilitated that they don't fully recover.

    Working as a nurse I was in pediatrics which is better funded than adult services- just because the public doesn't tolerate poor facilities for their kids. But we cleaned and reused single use items until they were falling apart. We wouldn't have had enough moniters if we could have tripled the amount, so we'd wheel them from bed to bed and do spot checks. In contrast the unit I worked on in the USA had telemetry and central monitoring, supplies used once and tossed. (I nearly went through the garbage to send them to my buddies back home!) Their playroom was bigger than my old unit, and they weren't under pressure to minimize supplies- if the kids needed it they got it (loved that).

    Having your health care covered is wonderful, but in my experience Americans get seen and treated before my family in Canada could get word of their first appointment.

    And remember the Nova Scotia nurses strike about 1 1/2 years ago? The government cut nursing wages, and then passed a law making it illegal for nurses to strike. It's hard to make progress when your employer is able to change the law to suit them.
  2. by   Ada
    In Finland we have a system which is very much like the Canadian one. The public health care is 11 euros (approx. the same in dollars) a year where you can visit as many times as you need to and that covers everything. Hospital stays are 26 euros a night.

    The down sides are long waiting lists and long waiting times (in the ER for example).

    However if you wish you can see a doctor on a private practice and pay part of it of your own pocket and get government reimbursement later. (I went to see a private practisioner and the bill was 44 and I was reimbursed 11 ). There are also insurance policies which pay for all of your private practice costs. Which means that if you're sick of waiting you can get treated privately.

    Down sides of this option: the costs

    I know I'm a student and I wouldn't be able to go to doctor without this public health care system.