Canada Must Rethink Healthcare

We need to accept the reality that more privatization is inevitable, while also emphasizing the personal responsibility we have to maximize our own fitness.

There are a growing number of stories about how Canada’s healthcare system is ‘on the brink of collapse.’

Even before covid, Canada’s healthcare system was failing, with our country spending much more than many of our peers only to get a worse result.

The system has long been unsustainable, as an irrational aversion to private healthcare has stifled innovation and left our country pouring money into a system that is less and less efficient and effective.

Many act as if there are only two possible systems:

The socialized Canadian system, and the privatized American system.

In reality, there are many choices, with most European countries effectively mixing public and private healthcare delivery with the result that they spend less while getting better results.

Canada must wake up to this.

We must rethink healthcare.

To start, we must allow the private delivery of health services, while maintaining a public system.

Let the systems compete. Let people pay for treatment if they can afford it.

And for those who can’t, there can still be a public system available.

This is the balance many countries achieve, and it works quite well.

Furthermore, this isn’t really a ‘choice’ for Canada. It is inevitable.

The lack of market incentives is ruining our system, and the pandemic made that more and more clear.

Many doctors and nurses have left Canada to work in the US, because they can make more money while doing the same – or less – amount of work.

If a job becomes more difficult – as nursing often was during covid – the way to keep someone willing to work that job is to increase their compensation.

But in the socialized Canadian system, the ability to respond to market incentives is absent.

Thus, many simply left to work in a system where they could be compensated.

It would have been far better for Canada to have a robust private health industry that could have kept those individuals in our country providing healthcare to Canadians.

Personal responsibility and health

One of the odd things about Canada is that we have socialized healthcare but not socialized fitness.

We expect everyone to be responsible for paying for the healthcare of others, but we place no responsibility on people to be as fit as they can.

I’m not talking about diseases or accidents, or disabilities that are out of people’s control. We should certainly all ensure people get the help they need for things they don’t control.

What I’m talking about is the absurd situation in which we say things like “healthy at any size,” often promote and even glorify unhealthy obesity, and act as if that has nothing to do with the healthcare challenges we face as a country.

We need to see health and fitness as life-long goals, and use the education system to raise a healthier, fitter generation to ensure that long-term health costs don’t continue to balloon out of control.

There also needs to be an emphasis on personal responsibility, and the promotion of physical achievement as the foundation of the strength of a country. A sick and unhealthy country can never be a strong country.

Further, things like ‘safe injection sites’ should be shut down. It’s absurd that taxpayer money goes towards funding illegal drug use, and this has turned sections of our major cities into open air drug dens.

Instead of subsidizing illegal drug use, perhaps we should subsidize healthy, home-grown food – including Canadian Beef.

Of course, the Neo-Communist politicians will never go along with a change to our failed socialized system, because for them what matters most is maintaining control over people, rather than actually delivering a functioning healthcare system.

But the fundamental reality of the unsustainability of our healthcare system means that there is simply no alternative. Canadian healthcare must become more privatized, and we must increasingly emphasize personal responsibility.

Spencer Fernando

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