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  1. #1
    Musicaholic Forums Moderator ForeverAutumn's Avatar
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    The difference between US and Canadian health care

    I just received this email for a fund-raiser to help raise money to pay medical bills for a Canadian now living in the US. Had he still been living in Canada when his illness occurred all of his expenses would have been paid for. You know, I read this kind of stuff and I just don't understand why Americans are so opposed to equal healthcare for all.

    Fundraiser for Jim Moss

    Many Brampton sports fans have fond memories of Jim Moss, a member of the Brampton Sports Hall of Fame and Canadian Lacrosse Hall of Fame and a former hockey and lacrosse star here.

    In 2002 he was a key player as the Brampton Excelsiors won the Mann Cup, the Canadian major lacrosse championship. He also played minor hockey while growing up in Brampton and was a member of the Brampton Capitals, Tier 2 Junior Hockey team.

    Now living in California, Moss's life took a stunning turn last September when he became ill with the H1N1 virus and contracted Guillan Barre Syndrome. That disease attacks the bodys peripheral nervous system and left him paralyzed and without sensation in both feet and hands.

    He was hospitalized and needed to re-learn to stand, walk and handle basic daily functions before he was able to return home. Since November he has been convalescing at home and undergoing physical and occupational therapy.

    Moss, who is the West Coast Sales Manager with STX Lacrosse, has had a portion of his medical expenses covered by his employment health insurance but because he was living in the U.S. he has been left with medical expenses of between $75,000 and $100,000 (US).

    He and his wife Jennifer, a native of Cambridge, have two young children, son Wyatt born in July 2007 and daughter Olivia born last November. Moss has been forced to take a reduced income while on long-term disability.

    A long-time player in the National Lacrosse League with the San Jose Stealth and the Colorado Mammouth, Moss has also lost his professional lacrosse income.

    The good news is that it is expected that with his on-going therapy he will have between 90 per cent and 100 per cent recovery within one to two years. Moss, who missed the 2009 season with a shoulder injury, is hopeful to come back and play lacrosse again.

    But the family still has the medical expenses.

    His uncle, Brampton Regional Councillor John Sanderson, is helping to organize a fund-raiser, a curling bonspiel for the Moss family on Saturday, March 27 at the Brampton Curling Club.


    I have not posted the rest of the email that goes on to describe a silent auction and other details of the event. If, by any chance, anyone is interested in attending this bonspiel, send me a PM and I'll forward the full email to you.

  2. #2
    Shostakovich fan Feanor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ForeverAutumn
    I just received this email for a fund-raiser to help raise money to pay medical bills for a Canadian now living in the US. Had he still been living in Canada when his illness occurred all of his expenses would have been paid for. You know, I read this kind of stuff and I just don't understand why Americans are so opposed to equal healthcare for all.
    ...
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  3. #3
    JSE
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    Quote Originally Posted by ForeverAutumn
    I just received this email for a fund-raiser to help raise money to pay medical bills for a Canadian now living in the US. Had he still been living in Canada when his illness occurred all of his expenses would have been paid for. You know, I read this kind of stuff and I just don't understand why Americans are so opposed to equal healthcare for all.

    Fundraiser for Jim Moss

    Many Brampton sports fans have fond memories of Jim Moss, a member of the Brampton Sports Hall of Fame and Canadian Lacrosse Hall of Fame and a former hockey and lacrosse star here.

    In 2002 he was a key player as the Brampton Excelsiors won the Mann Cup, the Canadian major lacrosse championship. He also played minor hockey while growing up in Brampton and was a member of the Brampton Capitals, Tier 2 Junior Hockey team.

    Now living in California, Moss's life took a stunning turn last September when he became ill with the H1N1 virus and contracted Guillan Barre Syndrome. That disease attacks the bodys peripheral nervous system and left him paralyzed and without sensation in both feet and hands.

    He was hospitalized and needed to re-learn to stand, walk and handle basic daily functions before he was able to return home. Since November he has been convalescing at home and undergoing physical and occupational therapy.

    Moss, who is the West Coast Sales Manager with STX Lacrosse, has had a portion of his medical expenses covered by his employment health insurance but because he was living in the U.S. he has been left with medical expenses of between $75,000 and $100,000 (US).

    He and his wife Jennifer, a native of Cambridge, have two young children, son Wyatt born in July 2007 and daughter Olivia born last November. Moss has been forced to take a reduced income while on long-term disability.

    A long-time player in the National Lacrosse League with the San Jose Stealth and the Colorado Mammouth, Moss has also lost his professional lacrosse income.

    The good news is that it is expected that with his on-going therapy he will have between 90 per cent and 100 per cent recovery within one to two years. Moss, who missed the 2009 season with a shoulder injury, is hopeful to come back and play lacrosse again.

    But the family still has the medical expenses.

    His uncle, Brampton Regional Councillor John Sanderson, is helping to organize a fund-raiser, a curling bonspiel for the Moss family on Saturday, March 27 at the Brampton Curling Club.


    I have not posted the rest of the email that goes on to describe a silent auction and other details of the event. If, by any chance, anyone is interested in attending this bonspiel, send me a PM and I'll forward the full email to you.
    My Short asnwer is this.....

    I don't think most Americans have a problem with everyone being able to obtain "real" health coverage but rather the method we are going to have to go about it doing. I think the majority of Americans would prefer an open market healthcare system that really works and is cost effective, not a Government run program. What would make anyone here in America think more Government involvement would make things more streamline and cost effective? It will become a huge political bogged down bureaucracy filled with lawsuits, red tape, piles of paper. etc. The majority of Americans agree we need healthcare reform, the same majority also wants to do it right, The plan currently being considered has some good points but also a lot of crap that will probably cost us needless trillions of dollars. The plan being considered is a onesided partisan bill that is being rammed down our throats against the will of the majority of Americans. But hey, when has the will of the American people ever been the concern of a politician in Washington?

  4. #4
    Class of the clown GMichael's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JSE
    But hey, when has the will of the American people ever been the concern of a politician in Washington?
    When it was time to write speeches during election years.

    Universal healthcare that works for everyone is a great idea. I wish that was what we were getting.
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  5. #5
    JSE
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    Quote Originally Posted by GMichael
    When it was time to write speeches during election years.

    Universal healthcare that works for everyone is a great idea. I wish that was what we were getting.

    Good point. Can you imagine the size of the trash can holding all the crumpled up speech outlines the politicians throw away and ignore as soon as they get elected?

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  6. #6
    3LB
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    JSE already said it. We're not getting Canada's healthcare system. Most American's agree that universal healthcare is a great idea...its just that we don't trust our own government to provide it. Lemme put it this way...let's say Canada is going to let the US gov't run its healthcare system...any takers, eh?

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  7. #7
    Super Moderator Site Moderator JohnMichael's Avatar
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    I would love to have healthcare. As a hypertensive diabetic I find insurance unaffordable. In order to save money I have learned to do my own stitches. When I wrecked on my bicycle and tumbled down that hill I went to a nurse to have my wounds dresssed and I did my own range of motion to ensure nothing was broken. I had a cardiac stress test. My last doctor was concerned about my heart and wanted me to have an expensive work up. I declined.

    Oh that is right healthcare is a privelage. I am not privelaged. I hope those of us who are uninsured will receive some affordable assistance in purchasing healthcare.
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  8. #8
    Musicaholic Forums Moderator ForeverAutumn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3LB
    JSE already said it. We're not getting Canada's healthcare system. Most American's agree that universal healthcare is a great idea...its just that we don't trust our own government to provide it. Lemme put it this way...let's say Canada is going to let the US gov't run its healthcare system...any takers, eh?

    Sometimes something isn't better than nothing.
    Yeah, I see what you guys are saying. I'm not sure that something isn't better than nothing though. I think it's abysmal that John had to turn down tests that his doctor suggested. But we've been down that road before on this site. I just found the story that I posted very sad.

  9. #9
    Shostakovich fan Feanor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3LB
    JSE already said it. We're not getting Canada's healthcare system. Most American's agree that universal healthcare is a great idea...its just that we don't trust our own government to provide it. Lemme put it this way...let's say Canada is going to let the US gov't run its healthcare system...any takers, eh?

    Sometimes something isn't better than nothing.
    Well, it you think that Canadian government is more efficient than American government you'd be wrong. But that's really not the issue.

    We here in Canada heard all the "goverment can't do anything right" arguments before our universal systems were installed here. Now no party could be elected anywhere in this country that advocates a return to a private system.

    World-wide people distain governments: they believe them to be ineffective, inefficient, bureaucracy-ridden, and corrupted by political considerations -- at it's all true to varying degrees. But as an employee of fairly large private companies for over 40 years, I can tell you that businesses share all the same characteristics as governments except for two things:
    • Where "ineffective" is concerned, substitute make as much profit as possible for benefit the people, and
    • Substitute self-serving of top managers, often at the expense of shareholders, for political considerations.
    The whole idea the private enterprise is inevidably more efficient than government is largely a myth. Sadly, it's one that afflicts people more in the US than anywhere else.
    Last edited by Feanor; 03-20-2010 at 05:30 AM.

  10. #10
    M.P.S.E /AES/SMPTE member Sir Terrence the Terrible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JSE
    My Short asnwer is this.....

    I don't think most Americans have a problem with everyone being able to obtain "real" health coverage but rather the method we are going to have to go about it doing. I think the majority of Americans would prefer an open market healthcare system that really works and is cost effective, not a Government run program. What would make anyone here in America think more Government involvement would make things more streamline and cost effective? It will become a huge political bogged down bureaucracy filled with lawsuits, red tape, piles of paper. etc. The majority of Americans agree we need healthcare reform, the same majority also wants to do it right, The plan currently being considered has some good points but also a lot of crap that will probably cost us needless trillions of dollars. The plan being considered is a onesided partisan bill that is being rammed down our throats against the will of the majority of Americans. But hey, when has the will of the American people ever been the concern of a politician in Washington?
    I pretty much agree with your points farty one, except the ramming down the throat slant. His is the rub for me. Many Americans would rather see a large bunch of fellow Americans without insurance than to see anything happen to their own insurance. Selfish? yes, but that is where we are at. The current proposal without a public option is not reform, but a lamb before a slaughter proposal. The idea of require everyone to have insurance without effective cost controls in the way of competition is absolutely irresponsible IMO. We are never going to get an open market option(which is essentially the public option), the insurance lobby(and our bought and paid for politicians) would fight it tooth and nail like they are already doing. So I don't think it is realistic to look at that direction, even if the public really wants it.

    Medicare is a government run program, that while under funded, nobody using it is unhappy with it. The quality of care is there, there is not so much red tape after you get into the system, and let's face it, seniors would rather kill you than let you tamper with it. If properly funded, it would be an excellent system to migrate towards. Under funding it is an administration issue, not a quality of care issue. There is waste that can be cut out, and that is what the current bill will do.

    I think the biggest mistake of the current bill is the mandatory must have part, without the public option part. The public option part would have been an open market setup much like you mentioned, and would have provided a ying and yang competition with the private insurance companies that would have cut costs for everyone. The problem with our health insurance system is that is a regional monopoly, with little or no competition among providers. The for profit angle does not lend itself to equal access for everyone, as it works to get sick or unhealthy folks out of the system, and keep healthy low use folks in the system. In other words, the health insurance companies get their huge profits by paying little out, and getting a lot of money in to their coffers. This unbridled and unchecked free market way of doing things does not help anyone accept the insurance companies stockholders. This system is a failure for even those who currently have health insurance.

    One of the most eye opening things about this whole debacle is that there are a lot of very stupid Americans that are protesting and voting against their own interest. The biggest population of un-insured folks come from red states, like Texas, Alabama, Georgia and several others. These states are represented by the very folks that demonize real reform. Then you have a whole political party that believes that it is better to spend three trillion dollars to create an image of power through war, than to spend one trillion on the health and well being of its citizens. It is okay for them to have great insurance for the rest of their lives, but not for the average citizen.

    As long as the average American lets the haves have and control everything, then I think they deserve exactly what they are currently getting, and that is nothing. When the average American starts telling the haves they cannot have everything to themselves, that is when we will have real change. The haves have done a spectacular job at making the have nots lives so miserable, that they do not have time to clearly see what is happening to them. They are too busy just surviving to engage in a way that can really change their lives.
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  11. #11
    Forum Regular blackraven's Avatar
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    The insurance companies are going to get richer and the government and public poorer with this health care plan. The cost of health care will still be expensive and get worse without reform.

    As far as the Canadian system goes, I was at an emergency medicine conference in Key west 3 weeks ago and there was a well known and respected Canadian emergency physician (practicing in Canada) part of the lecture panel who was asked about the Canadian system, what he thought about it and how it would work in the U.S.. He said that there are problems with the Canadian system and that its not perfect but it works for Canada. He stated that there are very long waits to get to see specialists and that they do ration some care. He also was emphatic that the Canadian system would not work here in the U.S and should not be a model for the US.. Peoples attitudes and expectations would have to drastically change. Medical practice in this country would have to change and that there would be a lot of unhappy people.
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  12. #12
    Shostakovich fan Feanor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by blackraven
    ... He also was emphatic that the Canadian system would not work here in the U.S and should not be a model for the US.. Peoples attitudes and expectations would have to drastically change. Medical practice in this country would have to change and that there would be a lot of unhappy people.
    He was being condescending.

  13. #13
    Forum Regular blackraven's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Feanor
    He was being condescending.
    Not really. He was just giving his profession opinion after having worked in both the US and Canada. He was very honest. And he in no way was saying one system was better than the other. We are all entitled to Life, Liberty and the pursiut of Happiness! It doesnt quite work in todays times.
    Last edited by blackraven; 03-21-2010 at 02:10 PM.
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  14. #14
    Shostakovich fan Feanor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by blackraven
    Not really. He was just giving his profession opinion after having worked in both the US and Canada. He was very honest. And he in no way was saying one system was better than the other.
    Well, I was just kind of needling you, BR.

    But there is not doubt which system is better for most of the people it is supposed to serve.

    That said, there is no reason for the US to precisely copy the Canadian system; there are plenty of other, universal healthcare systems to use as examples. One mentioned lot recently is the Swiss where private insurance companies provide all coverage and offer a variety of options. However I believe all essential procedures must be covered, pre-existing conditions cannot be excluded, and people's coverage can't be terminated; if you can't afford your premiums, you are subsidized in some way.

    Saddly, I think the US will be headed to some sort of "two-tiered" system. The notion that poor people are undeserving is too deeply engrained in the American psyche for truly equal healthcare to happen in your nation.

  15. #15
    Forum Regular blackraven's Avatar
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    There is no equality in a capitalist society like ours. There are the haves and have nots unfortunatley. Its going to take many years to change if ever.
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