Physicians

INTERNATIONAL/PHYSICIANS: Canadian doctors going home means the US sucks, n’est-ce pas?

This one I find hilarious and gives me great deal of personal satisfaction. The pro-American health care system, "it’s the finest on earth crowd" goes on and on about how terrible the Canadian system is and how all the doctors are leaving. In fact it was that sentiment especially from the wonderful, but confused, Sydney Smith over at Medpundit that inspired my "Oh Canada" tome.  (Actually I re-read "Oh Canada" the other day and it’s a pretty damn good piece of analysis if I say so myself).

Syd was basically saying that all the doctors were leaving cos they hated the clinical restrictions of the single payer system and wanted to move to the glorious homeland of free-choice medical practice and CABGs for 97 year olds. I showed pretty conclusively using actual real life data that a) very few doctors were leaving Canada for the US, and that b) if they were leaving it wasn’t that surprising as they get paid about twice as much by sneaking below the 49th parallel.

Well now we have more actual statistics and real data that shows that more Canadian doctors are heading back to Canada than are leaving — and this was in 2004 when hockey was on strike so there was no real reason to go to Canada! The numbers are:

Canada has seen more doctors returning than leaving for the first time in 30 years, a report by the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI) shows. The report, released Wednesday, says that between 2000 and 2004,the number of physicians leaving Canada declined by 38 percent. In 2004, 317 physicians returned to Canada and 262 left. That was a drop from 2000, when 420 doctors left the country and a significant decrease from the peak of 771 physicians who moved abroad in 1994.

I’m looking forward to the barrage of articles from the know-it all alleged "free-market" crowd who get spoon-fed rubbish by Frasier, PRI, Manhattan et al offering their apologies to the Canadians and admitting that their system is better than the one down here.  After all the alleged rush of Canadian doctors to the US was absolute proof in their mind that the reverse was true.

I’m waiting, I’m waiting….

Livongo’s Post Ad Banner 728*90
newest oldest most voted
Matthew Holt
Guest

OK kids–remember this one was about Canada NOT HSAs…
this one’s closed! Ask me if you want an open thread or if you want to buy an advertisement (as Linkmeister Steve suggested to Ron).

gadfly
Guest
gadfly

//WTF does free checking have to do with good health care?//
That comment wins!

Carl Schurz
Guest
Carl Schurz

Ron,
I wonder if we can read anything into your observation that people “like me” don’t take President Bush’s advice and call you up to order a HSA.
I never call to order the gold investment guides, baldness cures, and clincally proven sexual dysfunction treatments that are advertised on Rush Limbaugh’s show, either.
I suspect there may be a correlation.
Carl

Ron Greiner
Guest
Ron Greiner

Carl, I keep it simple with advertising. Something like; Don’t pay $1,000 a month for health insurance. Many families have HSA health insurance for $200 a month, then they grow their savings in a tax free HSA. Presedent Bush says, “Become empowered with a tax free HSA.” Call toll free Blah blah blah Then they call me paying $1,300 a month for COBRA insurance, because they just got fired and they need 2 months premiums to continue, and I tell them they can get HSA coverage for $211 a month and they are so pleased. Then I tell them the… Read more »

Carl Schurz
Guest
Carl Schurz

Ron, I’m a little underwhelmed by your analysis. There’s a big difference between HSAs becoming legal and HSAs becoming a successful system that real people actually use, like, and accept as a good idea for health care. I think there could just as easily be a huge consumer and voter backlash against “FREE CHECKING with your first MAMMOGRAM — CALL NOW!” health care. There is such a thing as political overreach, especially when such a major change to how people get health care is slipped into another unpopular health care bill that had to be rushed through Congress with a… Read more »

Ron Greiner
Guest
Ron Greiner

Carl, You wrote: //A lot of conservatives assumed that Americans just could not wait to turn Social Security over to Wall Street. Jokes about the Democrats aside, that hasn’t turned out so great for President Bush. I think you may be jumping to some similar conclusions on whether everyone thinks it’s going to be just awesome when we have to call a bank’s call center to deal with health care questions.// Here is the difference Carl. The Personal Savings Account (PSA) is just a dream or vision of the President. But the tax free HSA is the law of the… Read more »

Ron Greiner
Guest
Ron Greiner

Sorry gadfly, How soon I forget, like Toby Keith says, “I’m getting some years on me now.” The above post is wrong, as if anybody here would ever know. But I will correct the maximum HSA deposits of the past, silly me. The maximum MSA deposit, this is still true today, is 65% of the deductible for single coverage and 75% of the deductible for family coverage. Plus, there are no catch-up clauses, like the HSA, for additional deposits for those over 55 years old. The HRA salepeople were using MSAs in the past just like they do today, like… Read more »

Linkmeister
Guest

I suppose it’s too much to expect that Mr. Greiner could just buy an ad on these pages? I’m sure Matthew would sell some nice discreet space to him. It might eliminate some of the hype in the comments.
I’m sorry. I like reading the material Matthew has here, and I like the give-and-take, but reading the one-trick-pony stuff from Mr. Greiner is causing me to wonder how good the signal-to-noise ration is anymore.

janinsanfran
Guest

Terminator might will veto it, but the nurses are kicking Arnold’s pathetic political butt around here.

Carl Schurz
Guest
Carl Schurz

Ron, Strictly on the politics of this thing… I know that HSAs are on the verge of turning America into a place where our rivers literally flow with milk and honey, but I think that you might be overestimating average Americans’ eagerness to get the banking industry involved in health care. A lot of people just want to be able to take their kids to the doctor and not feel like they’re facing financial disaster if a test comes up badly. Period. They’re not going to be wild about being bombarded with millions of dollars of ads offering free checking… Read more »

Ron Greiner
Guest
Ron Greiner

NewsFlash gadfy, 4 hours ago: Down Under they are talking about the USA’s HSA. The NCPA has been there too. They report: “I’m calling for a national experiment that would allow the creation under Medicare of up to 100,000 MSAs,” Gross says. “Let’s evaluate whether they reduce the use of beds, and improve savings. If it doesn’t work, let’s try something else.” That is a good way to do it is just have a little MSA experment like we did here in America with the “Original Pilot Test.” Herrick of the NCPA, a big brainer PHD guy, restricted his MSA… Read more »

gadfly
Guest
gadfly

//Democrats in CA want to outlaw private insurance like in Canada.//
Perhaps it’s because the democrats noticed there were a bunch of people like me going to the ER for basic infections…and other problems picked up by the basic evils of poverty – poor nutrition, wrecked immune system, and often poor hygiene. Democrats finally realize that those people falling through the cracks will eventually pull everyone down with them.

Ron Greiner
Guest
Ron Greiner

Matthew is right, I’m still waiting for the NCPA to take back that family health insurance costs $4,000 a year from back in 2000 when Gore said it costs $6,000. I contacted them and pointed out that MSA family health insurance only costs $90 a month back then for a 30 year old couple and 2 children in Des Moines, Iowa. I mean really, with friends like that we needed no enemies. But the Democrats in CA want to outlaw private insurance like in Canada. I’m glad that the Brits don’t have to put up with these Democrats like are… Read more »

Matthew Holt
Guest

I leave you guys alone for one day and you all miss the point….. Of course we’re not getting Canadian system here, nor would I reccomend it, although the Canadian system clearly works better for Canadians than the American one does for Americans–espeically if you are below average income. Ron, aside from the HSA stuff, in the UK — yup that bastion of socialism that I came from, where I voted for a real conservative Maggie Thatcher (not that she changed the basics of the NHS)– you can buy private insurance to “jump the queue”. But everyone is covered and… Read more »

Ron Greiner
Guest
Ron Greiner

Spike, HSA enrollments are a majority individual health insurance plans and not dangerous group health employee plans that some employer chooses for you, so far. This could change by 1/1/06. If the Federal Government gave employees the choice of our HSA and individual insurance, we are so much cheaper and in more states than anybody else, we would have a majority or over 2 million HSAs now, just from Federal employees. Heck, probably we would have 500,000 Federal employees just because we have a Dependent Conversion Priviledge that the Federal choices lack. Soon the consumers will be smarter. You spike,… Read more »