Thursday, July 19, 2007

Canadians going to States for healthcare is anecdotal, says health boss Robert Bell

This is in regards to Robert Bell's letter ("American approach is definitely sicko") Globe and Mail, July 4, 2007:

Robert Bell, [who earns $667,000 (Globe and Mail, Mar.31, 2007) ] CEO of Toronto's University Health Network, claims we spend 9% of GDP to cover 100% of Canadians. But, so what that we're "insured" if we can't even find a doctor? The Ontario Medical Association's Dr. David Bach has said 1.2 million Ontarians, out of a population of 12 million, are without a doctor. The Globe (Feb. 27, 2007) reported that Ontario is short 2400 doctors. Yet Bell cites claims that "97% of Canadians had a primary doctor".

Did Bell read Carol Sherman's column in the same newspaper, the Globe and Mail, on Mar. 31, 2007 ("Wanted: One family doctor.(Get in line)") in which she outlines her difficulties in finding a doctor in Toronto, Canada's largest city? "Let me be clear," Sherman wrote, "I wasn't sick. I just wanted a doctor to remain healthy."

Bell claims that 44 million Americans are without health insurance; however, as Jeffrey Simpson wrote in The Globe (July 11, 2007), it is a gross distortion of reality to suggest that U.S. hospitals are throwing people into the streets for lack of health insurance.

Bell must be spouting his own bias that "Canadians do indeed have a better health system than our neighbours".

He says it's just "invoking anecdotes" that many Canadians have to travel to the States because the sicko Canadian system cannot deliver upon its socialist promises. Here in St. Catharines, for example, patient Suzanne Aucoin is holding a fundraiser on July 20, 2007 to pay for her cancer
treatment in the States, because OHIP refuses to cover her. Is that an anecdote, Mr. Bell? Is that an inconvenient truth to your we're better mantra?

Bell should stop marginalizing patients, who have suffered under our ideological healthcare monopoly, by referring to their experience as "anecdotal". Let's not mask evidence of the "big lie" of Canada's mythical, single-payer universality.

No comments: