Socialized Medicine In Canada
Socialized medicine is wonderful; it ensures everyone has access to basic medical care regardless of the size of their wallets. But; there's drawbacks (other than our high taxes).
4-5 Million people in Canada do not have a family physician
There's 1 physician for every 524.6 people
Access to rehab is next to nil for COPDer's (less than 2% of COPDer's are able to take part in pulmonary rehab due to lack of programs and facilities);
There's a shortage of Specialists. The only way we can see a professional is to be referred to one by our GP's then wait a few months.
Many COPDer's suffer from sleep apnea but many sleep study clinics are backed up/booked by a couple of years.
Not all of our provinces fund what's considered to be the best or latest medicines currently available (and recommended by the Canadian Thoracic Society) for this disease.
On average, across Canada, only 35% of our GP's use a simple spirometry test to diagnose COPD though 74 % have access to it. The end result: misdiagnosis and undiagnosis.
In Nova Scotia, you pay more for an oil change than what the Government pays your Dr. for an office visit. (after his/her overheads)
As patients we are very limited, expected even to feel "grateful" for the care that we do get since we have few options of Dr's, medicines and treatments.
It's estimated that the impact of COPD (as per a 1998 Health Canada report) in dollar amounts, is $ 1.67 Billion. They're aware of the cost but little else. Two of several most effective ways they CAN reduce the "financial burden" is by promoting early testing for the disease and ensuring patients have the proper medicines and rehabilitation. This reduces the frequency of ER visits, hospital stays and mortality. THIS ISN'T our 'Opinion".....this is PROVEN fact!
If you would like to see just how YOUR province is handling this disease overall, check out the National and Provincial ratings.
As Canadians we tend to be a tad bit more tolerant; sometimes even complacent. However; there's no place for apathy when it comes to COPD. You MUST understand this disease and empower yourself. By doing so you will not only be able to take charge of your disease, but also your care. You must be your own advocate; you can't rely solely on the medical community or the government.
Join with us here at COPD Canada Patient Network and HAVE A COLLECTIVE VOICE!!! We're ALL patients, or support people of. You've NOTHING to loose but everything to gain! Membership is FREE and you WON'T be Alone!
We NEED you and we NEED each other!
This page was last updated January 9th, 2010