Claude Cartaginese

FOX: The Disaster of Obama's Canadian Model for Healthcare "Reform"

Posted on July 20 2009 7:49 am
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David Gratzer is not a household name—yet.  Gratzer, a physician, is the author of the book Cold Blue: Reviving Canada’s Health Care System, as well as dozens of articles attacking the Canadian system, most notably his 2007 piece:The Ugly Truth About Canadian Health Care.” You read that right.  His articles and book are about reforming Canada’s healthcare system, the same system that President Barack Obama has chosen as a model for this country to emulate as he takes us down the path towards socialism.

Dr. Gratzer, a guest on this past Sunday’s weekly FOX program Huckabee, talks about how he went from embracing the Canadian model of health care, to advocating for its reform.  For all of its perceived virtues, he notes, Canada’s health-care system is lacking in three things: efficiency, innovation, and compassion.

Gratzer describes the day — back in 1997 — when he first became aware of how flawed Canada’s health care system really was:

“I was once a believer in socialized medicine. I don’t want to overstate my case: growing up in Canada, I didn’t spend much time contemplating the nuances of health economics. I wanted to get into medical school—my mind brimmed with statistics on MCAT scores and admissions rates, not health spending…what I knew about American health care was unappealing: high expenses and lots of uninsured people. When [Hillary Clinton‘s] HillaryCare shook Washington, I remember thinking that the Clintonistas were right.

“My health-care prejudices crumbled not in the classroom but on the way to one. On a subzero Winnipeg morning in 1997, I cut across the hospital emergency room to shave a few minutes off my frigid commute. Swinging open the door, I stepped into a nightmare: the ER overflowed with elderly people on stretchers, waiting for admission. Some, it turned out, had waited five days. The air stank with sweat and urine. Right then, I began to reconsider everything that I thought I knew about Canadian health care. I soon discovered that the problems went well beyond overcrowded ERs. Patients had to wait for practically any diagnostic test or procedure, such as the man with persistent pain from a hernia operation whom we referred to a pain clinic—with a three-year wait list; or the woman needing a sleep study to diagnose what seemed like sleep apnea, who faced a two-year delay; or the woman with breast cancer who needed to wait four months for radiation therapy, when the standard of care was four weeks.”

Take note of those wait times!  Is this really the model that Barack Obama believes is the answer to America’s perceived health care crisis?  In a country where people have come to expect nearly instant gratification for everything, are Americans now ready for a three-year wait for pain management, even if it’s “free”?

Americans aren’t the only ones who should be worried about the pending ruination of the world’s finest system of health care. Those Canadians who come the United States in the desperate hope of getting timely, advanced treatment for their serious illnesses—i.e., those Canadians who want a chance to live—are going to have the door closed to them when Obama’s health-care vision for this country becomes its worst nightmare.

And for those legislators actively involved in trying to push Obama’s health care reform bill down our collective throats, Dr. Gratzer has some advice for you: “Slow down, read the bill, and be careful what you wish for.”

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