Canadians have been told for years how great their socialized "free" healthcare system is; that it is the envy of the rest of the world. The truth is somewhat different though.
My wife is actually the only member of our family who has a family doctor. He doctor won’t see my sons and I because we don’t make enough appointments with her.
In fact, she requires my wife to make a different appointment for every health concern. She won’t discuss more than one thing at an appointment. She also will not gove my wife more than a single month’s prescription, even for drugs that she needs to be on every day. She instead insists that my wife make another appointment every month just to renew the prescription.
Last week my wife had surgery and she is not allowed to drive or really go too far for two weeks. Her doctor is fully aware of this. Yet to renew a prescription for a drug that she must take every day, her doctor insisted that she come in for an appointment, against the advice of her surgeon. Fortunately the pharmacy knows her and they gave her a seven day advance on that medicine.
This doctor has done other things that border not only on the questionable, but also the unethical.
Now you might suggest that we simply find another doctor. But that isn’t how it works in Canada. Where we live, and area with a population of around half a million people, there are about 20,000 without family doctors. Few doctors are taking on new patients, and those that do often will not take on someone with pre-existing health conditions. So if you have a doctor, no matter how bad, you really can’t risk jeopardizing that.
Imagine a situation where you are receiving poor healthcare, but you can’t complain or do anything about it, because the only other option is no healthcare. You can’t even complain about unethical situations for the same reason. Bad doctors are protected by the mere fact that they are just slightly better than no doctor at all.
Of course we don’t have to imagine it; we live it every day.
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