OTHER VOICES

Modern Healthcare - - OPINIONS EDITORIALS - —Des Moines Reg­is­ter

“Among the many po­lit­i­cal ads run­ning in Iowa is a 60-sec­ond spot fea­tur­ing a Cana­dian woman. She was fac­ing a life-and-death health prob­lem, and she says she turned to the United States’ med­i­cal sys­tem for treat­ment be­cause the wait in her home coun­try would have been too long. The group Amer­i­cans for Pros­per­ity is spend­ing $6 mil­lion to tell view­ers ‘un­der Pres­i­dent Obama, Amer­ica’s health­care is be­com­ing more like the Cana­dian sys­tem.’ Of course Canada, which in­sures all its res­i­dents, prob­a­bly looks pretty ap­peal­ing to mil­lions of Amer­i­cans who have no cov­er­age. Wait­ing for a nonur­gent surgery like knee- and hip-re­place­ments up North doesn’t sound so bad to Amer­i­cans who will wait for­ever to get surgery or med­i­ca­tions be­cause they have no in­sur­ance and can­not af­ford to pay for them. The ad re­lies on Amer­i­cans be­liev­ing the United States’ sys­tem of health­care is the best in the world. But it isn’t. The ad im­plies that Cana­di­ans are fall­ing all over them­selves to come here for treat­ment. They aren’t. The truth is Amer­i­cans use the Cana­dian sys­tem. … Canada’s sys­tem is com­pli­cated. It has some prob­lems. Yet it in­sures all of its res­i­dents for a frac­tion of what the United States spends to not cover ev­ery­one.”

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