Health Care System Comparison Essay

1123 words - 4 pages

Both Canadian and American health care systems have become a significant part of my culture. I have recently been diagnosed with two major ailments for which both countries hospitals have become dear to my heart. Without the use of both systems I firmly believe I would not be here today. There are many differences between the American and Canadian health care system, both of which I have used and have experience in. I will discuss their fundamental differences and give my opinion as to what aspects I like and dislike about each.
There are major differences between the Canadian and American Health Care Systems. The Canadian Health Care is publicly based which means it is governed by the Canada Health Act. It was created to ensure all Canadian citizens have access to health services. Costs are paid through funding from income tax where virtually all essential basic care is covered. Several practices like psychology, chiropractic, physiotherapy and medication (services not deemed critical) are not covered by the government but can be insured by private companies issued through employers or purchased individually. If the patient lacks private insurance, they have to pay out of their own pocket. The United States health care system is privatized and is profit based. Americans do not automatically have health coverage. They pay out of their own pocket for all services which means people may go untreated if treatment is unaffordable. For many Americans health insurance is a perk given by an employer to help cover the cost of basic health services. Americans can also purchase health insurance individually at an astronomical price (Parente and Bragdon). When it comes to looking at the fundamentals of both private and public systems, I offer the opinion that public system seems the way to go. Regardless of wealth, each Canadian citizen is treated equally when it comes to health services and have all standard procedures covered. Whereas, in the United States your health is greatly related to your economic standing.
The American government spends more money on research for health care than in Canada (Wikipedia). This provides patients with modern treatment, wider access to preventive care and diagnostic technology, availability to the newest life-changing medical technology, access to highly trained specialists, and better access to the world’s leading doctors; if you have insurance. In my own experience I was diagnosed with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) when I was twenty-six years of age. The Canadian government recognizes OCD as a mild disorder and is deemed not life threatening as a result they do not have sufficient medical programs to treat this disease. I was seen by doctors from several different provinces in Canada but they all agreed that I needed intensive therapy to be able to live a somewhat normal life. They all recommended going to the US to seek treatment as that is where OCD is recognized as a debilitating disorder and where the...

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