Saturday, August 15, 2009

How Canada Views U.S. Healthcare Reform

Kenneth Kidd of the Toronto Star looks at the debate over healthcare reform in the U.S.

For Canadians and Europeans, who tend to view medical care as a civic right alongside the vote, the current debate over the U.S. health-care system can often seem puzzling – not just in its intensity, but how a government role marks such an emotional divide.

The United States spends more on health care than any other country on the planet, about 16 per cent of gross domestic product, compared with 10 per cent in Canada. Nearly half of all that spending already passes through government hands via the likes of Medicaid and Medicare, the program for seniors.

And yet there are still nearly 50 million Americans without insurance of any kind. Why?

Because there are too many people who are making a killing — literally — out of the healthcare racket and they know how to scare the crap out of the gullible and the uninformed.