Hi. I am a nursing student and my assignment is to dialogue with Canadian nurses about Canada's health care system. This is my first time posting a question on line. My question is are you seeing an influx of US citizens receiving health care in Canada? If so how do they pay for it? What provisions does your government make for a type of situation like this? :
Feb 14, '03
I cannot imagine why we would see an INFLUX of US citizens receiving our health care. In general, Canadian's wait a longer time for specialist consults, diagnostic tests and surgery than Americans do.
If an American was in need of health services, at a Canadian hospital, the hospital's business office would likely try to arrange for the patient to pay cash or bill a third party such as the patient's insurer (I believe most American insurer's would deny coverage since similar medical/hospital services are available in the US).
Canadian hospitals are publicly funded but they can accept a very small number of cash patients if they have beds available or in compassionate cases, such as surgery for a child from a third world country. Compassionate cases are cash patient's who have charitable organizations raise the cash. The Hospital for Sick Kids in Toronto, recieves alot of local media attention when it provides this type compassionate surgery.
Canadian hospitals can not support an influx of cash paying American's jumping the waiting lists and using the healthcare system. It is unfair to all of us as tax-payers and is a breech of the principle of universality in Canada Health Act, (breeches of the Canada Health Act are fineable offences)
I am not sure what course you are taking that you asked these interesting questions, but if you are comparing American and Canadian health care systems there are some basic differences.
American's have a market model health care system / Canadian's have a national health insurance system
American gov't plays a minimal role / Canadian gov't tries to balance autonomy and collective good.
American system depends on ability to pay or access to private health insurance. / Canadian system depends on adequate tax base to maintain a public insurance program and fair distribution.
Feb 14, '03
ummm noooo...but I have seen a ton of Canadian Citizens head south for medical care...
Feb 15, '03
I have had a few Americans, but most of my self paying clients (and there are LOTS of them) come from China/Hong Kong. They come to BC to give birth and I was told the charge was something like 2100$ a day for mom and baby to be in the hospital, plus extra for an epidural and the like. There is no waitlist for maternity patients luckily. They all pay for their care, usually with cheques or money orders and most of them are obviously wealthy so it isn't a problem.
From what I understand, Americans generally come here for prescription medications if they can because they are cheaper here, and I know some of my American family members have come to BC for laser eye surgery and plastic surgery.
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