Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Debating Obamacare

In Congress they're debating the repeal of Obamacare. At the same time, a milestone in the national "debate" has been reached. Over half of the states are involved in lawsuits to escape Obamacare. One of the regular commenters at Michelle Malkin's blog, 123upnorth, a Canadian, had this to say about Canadacare, which is where Obamacare would take us:

I realize the constiutional argument is strong and should be fought and won. However, I want to implore Americans to fight the battle against healthcare not only on a consitutional basis, but based upon the grounds that the quality of healthcare within a publicly-mandated system will S.U.C.K. beyond explanation, whether or not the constiution allows for it.

I live in Canada and regularly have to travel to America for healthcare. In Canada, people don’t have adequate quality of health services, nor do they have access to it. For example, approximately 15% of Canadians are without proper access to a family doctor. The majority of patients, once referred to a specialist, wait anywhere from 3 to 6 months to see the specialist.

After waiting for a specialist, a patient then has to go on a waiting list to get diagnostics, then wait for a follow up appointment with the specialist, at which time the patient will be instructed as to whether other tests are needed. If surgery is scheduled after the first round of tests, the wait for this too can be extensive. Because of the extensive waiting times, patients become more sick than otherwise would be the case if they were seen faster and their chances of beating their ailments is reduced.

In the end, to go through the process of seeking help and getting full treatment, the duration can often exceed one year. And that is if everything goes well. If tests are inconclusive, if a patient needs a second opinion etc., the total duration can exceed 18 to 24 months.

Even more depressing is the fact that we don’t get to choose specialists for the most part because each family doctor only works with a few specialists in each field of treatment in their geographical region. Because there is such a shortage of family doctors, you can’t switch between them to get access to another group of specialists. If you receive inferior treatment from the specialist you are directed to, it is much harder to go elsewhere and get the needed referral.

Lastly, because there is no incentive for doctors and specialist to invest in better medical treatment technologies, advancements that are introduced in the ‘for profit’ system in America and elsewhere aren’t made available to Canadians because they don’t have to be made available. Think about it, why would a public system that has a monopoly ever invest in doing things better if they are the only option for patients?

A public system is a death trap and the only players in the trap that can side-step it and get adequate treatment are members of the privelaged class that have the connections to do so. You can already see evidence of this with all the wiavers that are being granted.

Commenter bjc added this to the conversation:

I am from Canada, with many family members still there, and all that 123 says is factual; It was deplorable 15 to 20 years ago, and worse so now; My parents have no good options to maintaining quality of life under such a system; It has been painful to watch them suffer in a supposedly first world country!

I realize the House doesn't have the power to completely repeal Obamacare at this time, but they do have the power to defund its implementation. I pray the Republicans in the House have what it takes to actually do it.

1 comment:

Delta said...

I pray they will act upon the ability to defund Obamacare too, Skye!

You said it well when you said healthcare under Obamacare will S.U.C.K. If they can't fix Medicaid and Medicare, what makes them think putting the whole country on a plan will be any better? (sigh)