A Harvard Medical School survey has found that Canadians are healthier than Americans, have better health-care access than Americans and are generally more satisfied with their medical services than their southern neighbours.
Well, tell me something I don’t already know. Of course it is—Canadians get basic health coverage free, whether they are employed, unemployed, on welfare, or disabled. It doesn’t cost a dime to walk into a doctor’s office and get looked at. Granted, we could use a lot more doctors and other issues that must be dealt with, but overall we’re taking care of ourselves a lot better than the Americans do.
We need to keep this in mind when Ralph Klein and his ilk want to start tinkering with medicare.
It’s my theory that Canada’s universal health care is one of the reasons that the crime rate is low compared with that of the United States. Not being able to go to the doctor when you’re sick is traumatic and induces feelings of helplessness, hopelessness, and desperation. And that’s a recipe for violence and acting out. People want respect and a sense that they matter. Universal health care is one of the ways a healthy society cares for its citizens.
I also sense threads relating to the issues raised by Dr. Frederick Hickling. American society is not providing the necessities of life for all of its citizens. If American society were a parent, it would be charged with neglience and abuse. Is this not a form of cultural mental illness? And don’t the victims suffer like victims everywhere: post-traumatic stress disorder, depression and anxiety disorders, crushed self-esteem, and that all-pervading sense that no one gives a damn.
And that’s a damn shame.