Canada last in health care

Posted By: Jerry Agar · 1/20/2014 8:03:00 AM

These are the kinds of reports that drive some people crazy.  The Health Council of Canada tells us that of the 34 nations in the OECD, Canada comes last in terms of wait times for health care.

Find the report here.

Why do so many people put their fingers in their ears at this kind of news? Why do they respond my railing away - usually, in my experience, with incorrect information - about how bad things are in the Unisted States? We are worse than 33 other nations. That includes the United States, but only as one among many.

The first step to solving a probem is to admit that you have one.

We have a big one. Our treasured health care system is failing us.

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  1. Frankie posted on 01/20/2014 11:03 AM
    Our politicians are so committed to achieving a "perfect" system of 1 tier that they end up crippling the health care system. Better to have a system that works 80% really well than strive for 100% and ending up with 50%. If they accepted tiers there'd be less strain on the system and less wait times, lower overall health care costs. etc.

    It takes a politician and their bureaucrats to defy logic!
  2. Steve posted on 01/20/2014 02:41 PM
    Wow. It really depends on how you measure and what you are measuring. I was diagnosed with prostate cance in late October 2012 and had surgery the 3rd of january, 2013. Is that waiting too long? I didn't think so. Not only that, but, unlike the USA, I got a first class surgical team and they never asked me what insurance coverage I had. I will take our healthcare system, warts and all, over the US model any day. Oh, by the way, I have a brother in the US who does not have insurance, his PSA level is through the roof and there is nothing he can do until he qualifies for Medicaid. he could be dead by then. A two tier system favours the rich over everyone else (see USA) and they buy their way ahead of everyone else. We need to protect our healthcare system. Perfect it is not but it is worth protecting!
  3. Big Daddy posted on 01/20/2014 05:00 PM
    Even when Agar attempts to tell us how broken our system is by citing credible sources, he still provides erroneous information.

    If he had actually read the report, he would have noted that Canada's ranking is relative to 10 other OECD countries as opposed to 33 that he cites. The main genesis of the report was how countries ranked in terms of how quickly patients can get an appointment with their doctor.

    I guess the purpose of his blanket statements is to be provocative...suggest he do more research on the research the time.
    1. Edwin posted on 02/05/2014 08:31 AM
      @Big Daddy Yeah.
      Jerry is on glue. Not sure where he gets the 33 countries.
      All you need to do is read the document. Something he likely did not do.

      In all of the comparisons all you see is 11 countries listed. Or, if you read through you will find indicators like this:

      Health status
      • 61% of Canadians rate their health as very good or excellent, putting Canada among the top three of the 11 countries surveyed.

      What does it state at the end of this? Not 34.

  4. StephenS_5505 posted on 01/21/2014 11:26 AM
    Need surgery on my elbow. Had my Rhumatologist send me to a specialist, two weeks later saw him, had the diagnosis confirmed, did the x-rays and the ultra sound two days later have an appointment with the sugeon end of this month.

    My wife needed an MRI 15 days from appt to MRI. I can see my family GP within 24 hours.

    Maybe I'm lucky but I will take our system over the pay up front US system. BTW Jerry you could not afford the premuims on a US style system at your age and health level,
    1. StephenS_5505 posted on 01/31/2014 08:50 AM
      @StephenS_5505 So just a f/u Had appoimtment at St Mike's yesterday with the surgeon. Surgury next month and another test with a specialist before surgery. So again maybe me but system seems to work well
  5. SteveB_10 posted on 01/21/2014 03:42 PM
    Jerry, Jerry, Jerry, do not throw the baby out with the bathwater.
  6. Derry posted on 01/21/2014 07:33 PM
    I think that this whole discussion about saving on health care could be solved if we follow Jerry's lead and crack down on those teachers and how much they have!! Does anyone realize how much they just got in pay raises even though there is a "supposed" pay freeze....yeah right like they dont already get three months off a year and ONLY work six hours a day. I always see my kids teachers driving their BMWs off at three and there still not coaching and taking care of my kids after school with all there needs!! My kids need role models out there and there not doing that1 Who is going to teach them that? And... leave Rob Ford alone because I think he is the real deal and he is actually putting Toronto finally on the map with all of his weird antics and funny stuff. At least the world is finally paying to our city because our sports teams cant and who cares about our waterfront and transit stuff. Ro b Ford might really be the best ambassador for this city internatioanlly in a long, long time. Let him be drunk!!!
  7. MrMarbles posted on 01/22/2014 06:56 PM
    I know two people who had cancer, one with a serious autoimmune disease, another with heart problems(all in another province). All received excellent health care and would not be alive today if they didn't. The system has some flaws for sure, but if you have a serious illness, you'll be taken care of.
  8. levon posted on 01/23/2014 11:47 AM
    Agar is an Americanized Canadian and worse a Tea Bagger. He believes our healthcare system should be privatized. So whenever he can kick at our system he's there. I take nothing he says seriously. Just another grumpy old rw'er with a talk show.
  9. Stan posted on 01/30/2014 09:17 AM
    Police to shut down cars? I don't think this should ever happen as you can imagine your wife or daughter driving down the road and some shady individuals want to accost them for some reason. I know the hackers can figure this out and it will be used for no good. I know as I just spent an hour on the phone with my server because someone else has started up e-mail in my name. Scary stuff!
  10. Vania posted on 02/03/2014 11:31 AM
    Good morning, love the show....I am a woman in her 40's, two years ago went to my doctor asking him to have a full check on my hormones ..etc. within a serious reason. I was sent home by him, telling me I look great and he will see me next year for a check up. Two years later, I waited for him to leave on vacation, booked an appointment with his replacement and got a referral for a specialist, gynecologist, the waiting list for which was two months. I managed to get in, in two weeks after describing to the nurse history of my family health regarding cancer. Two months later I was informed that I am caring a fibroid of a large size as 9cm, I will be referred to Sunny Brook Hospital, god knows how long this will take....Long story short, after asking the last doctor why it was so hard to get a diagnose his only comment was least you have no cancer...!!! ...what would have been different if you knew two years ago? My life has turned into hell for the last two years from the pain and etc. caused by the fibroid growth in my body, it did effect my entire life. I feel robbed from the right to be healthy and remain normality in every day activities, not to mention happiness. Who is to blame, who is responsible for so many women suffering from similar issues and worst, but not considered priority in our health care. Also the actual medications that I need to take for the pain are not covered by OHIP, I am a low income, or should I say bellow point of poverty point financially, so I can't afford buying the meds. For the record %80 of women have to deal with the same health issue after the age of forty based on our anatomy.
    Thank you for your time and many of us would like to hear your take on the subject.
    Citizen of Toronto
  11. lisa posted on 02/03/2014 03:10 PM
    Canada is also a country without proper informed written consents which would prevent a lot of unnecessary surgery- for-profit that takes place now. This owuld clear the wait-lists for legitimate surgery cases.

    Allowing cleaner, safer private clinics to do surgeries in their area of expertise, weeding out patients who will be harmed by surgery they don't need, and getting real about preventative medicine and letting specialities such as naturopathy step up to prevent half of heart disease, for example, are the best ways to cut wait times.

    Medicines profits from failing to warn, and by doing repeat treatments. Provinces have to smarten up, encourage the best doctors, create informed written consent forms costing five cents a page to save billions, and bring forward professions which can axe drug and surgery costs through good old-fashioned prevention, such as naturopathy and chiropractic care. A trip to the gym wouldn't hurt either, to correct knee and hip pain, for example.

    We aren't buying the latest cry from medicine for more money.
  12. geraldine clark posted on 02/05/2014 03:41 PM
    Do not have Twitter and would like to tell you how much I am enjoying Straight Talk each day! You maintain an excellent level of true journalism,
    Thank you! gc
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