Monday, May 24, 2004

Health Care Watch: Canada loses more patients than US

I've been blogging about healthcare recently, and it seems to me that there are pro's and con's to this idea of national healthcare coverage. Dan Drezner covers a recent report that indicates that not all aspects of the Canadian healthcare system are desirable. The study he cites finds that:

As many as 24,000 patients die in Canadian hospitals each year, while tens of thousands more are crippled, injured or poisoned in association with medical errors that could have been prevented.

A new landmark study of 20 hospitals in five provinces found one in 13 patients suffers an adverse event, more than double the rate found in studies of U.S. hospitals. [emphasis added]

I have to agree Dan. I have to say that Canada's system is over-rated. It does give universal coverage which is a good thing, but it also has serious signs of sacrificing quality in order to do so.

So the question becomes, which would you rather have? A health-care system that covers everybody and is nationalized, but you get not as good treatment options and fewer choices ... or a healthcare system where large portions of the population have no or sub-standard government subsidized healthcare but has the best technology and treatment options in the world?

It's not such an easy choice when it's put that way.

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