American vs. Canada, Who Has the Better Health Care System? Canada In the 1960’s, Canada reformed its system providing a universal single payer health care system which covers all services provided by physicians and hospitals it is mostly free at point of use and has most services provided by private entities. Single payer health care is the financing of costs of delivering universal health care for an entire population through a single insurance pool. The government took over full funding of both physician and hospital services, setting minor physician fees and hospital budgets.
Everyone is covered at all times. United States of America For the past 8 decades, the U. S. has run its country on a private health care system where the individual pays for their choice of health care. Depending on the coverage of the health care amounts to the cost. In the U. S, government funding for health care is limited to Medicare, Medicaid, Veterans Administration and the State Children’s Health Insurance Program, which covers senior citizens, the very poor, disabled people, veterans and their families and children.
The United States is the only country in the developing world that does not have a fundamentally public tax-supported health care system. Debate Canadians as well as Americans both have pros and cons with their health care systems. Canada is not as populated as America with 1/10 of America’s population; it becomes difficult to see a specialist. At times, Canadians have to travel thousands of miles in order to meet up with some specialists. Due to the single payer healthcare, doctors don’t get paid “enough” and then have what they like to call a “brain drain” where Canadians become doctors and move to the United States to make a better living.
One of the major problems in Canada is the waiting period to be helped, because of the lack of doctors patients may have to wait several months for surgeries such as hip replacement. A patient once had to wait 13 weeks just to see a specialist, then 20 for the surgery. Canada’s universal health care system doesn’t cover certain services. Non- cosmetic dental care is covered for children up to age 14 in some provinces. Optometry is only covered in some provinces and is sometimes only covered for children under a certain age.
Visitors to non-physician specialist may require an additional fee. Also certain procedures are covered under certain circumstances. Circumcision is not covered, and a fee is usually charged when a parent requests the procedure. In both Canada and the United States, access to health care can be an issue. Studies show that 40 percent of U. S citizens do not have adequate health insurance, if any at all. In Canada, as many as 5 percent of Canadians have not been able to find a regular doctor, and 9 percent of citizens have never looked for one. Consumer Reports study in 2007 on the U.
S. health system showed that the underinsured account for 24 percent of the U. S population and live with insurance that barely covers their medical needs and leave them unprepared to pay for major medical expenses. A total of 16 percent Americans are uninsured when added with the underinsured, there is a total of 40 percent of Americans with inadequate access to health care. Being that so many people are underinsured or simply uninsured, many of them don’t go to the doctor for a yearly check up causing a long term cost in health as well as financially.
One positive thing about the U. S is the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act or EMTALA. The EMTALA law forces emergency health care providers to stabilize an emergency health crisis and cannot withhold treatment for lack of evidence of insurance coverage or other evidence of the ability to pay. The hospital has the right to pursue any debtor for the cost of emergency health care provided. In Canada, emergency room treatment for Canadian residents is not charged to the patient at time of service but it’s met by the government.
Health care is one of the most expensive items in both national budgets. U. S governments spending covers less than half of health care’s cost. Obviously, private spending for health care is greater in the U. s than in Canada. In Canada, an average of $917 was spent annually by individuals or private insurance companies for health care, involving dental, eye care, and drugs. In the U. S. an average of $3,372 was spent. In 2006, health care consumed 15. 3 percent of U. S annual GDP while in Canada, only 10 percent of GDP was spent on health care.
It’s clear that national health systems cost less than private insurance. More money per person is spent on health care in the U. S than in any other nation in the world. A 2001 study in five states found that medical debt contributed to 62 percent of all personal bankruptcies. Since then, health costs and the number of underinsured and uninsured have increased. In the U. S. private health care systems all compete for your money. You pay a monthly fee to say you have insurance, then go to a physician and get charged a great deal of money because you’re insurance doesn’t cover it.
Your son gets sick, you take him to the hospital then 2 months later your getting a bill of $20,000 for his expenses. It’s simply ridiculous. The United States government must enjoy being outcasts. I believe they are in major financial debt today because of their poor choices in budgeting. It is not understood why they won’t reform their system and pass universal health care system throughout the country. It is less expensive but most importantly it covers everyone in time of need and health.
Having a universal health care system will decrease diseases and increase life span as well as educate most about their health. People will feel content to be able to get examined by a physician every year just to maintain health and prevent any sorts of diseases or illnesses. The U. S has a lot of great programs for the unprivileged but many people are unaware of it, and what about everyone else? Some citizens stay on a “job lock” where they’re scared to leave their job because of the minor benefit of a health care they might not be able to find elsewhere.
I say minor benefit, because it’s not like the insurance will cover much. Canadians as well as the rest of the developing countries are very smart about their decisions with health care. Keeping a healthy society is key to maintain a balanced atmosphere. Although taxes may be higher it’s worth the cost, personally, I rather pay more taxes then pay for a private insurance who’s taking my money and not covering me fully in times of an emergency or a simple check up. Canada has the better health system.