Canada has universal health care, but it isn’t at all ready for such a pandemic

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Canada has universal health care, but it isn’t at all ready for such a pandemic

What happens in Canada is that even during a normal season without a major epidemic, hospitals are completely filled to capacity.

The government provides universal health care, but only for personal emergencies like when individual people are sick (cancer, heart attack, etc.) and for certain surgeries also.

The government builds as few hospitals as possible and hires as few doctors as possible, while paying them large salaries. The result is that currently, there are few hospitals and few doctors when compared to Italy and France. The hospitals and doctors are overburdened even without Covid-19.

I don’t think Canada will be able to manage the crisis properly because its system constantly functions to capacity and it isn’t able to display any flexibility at all. This results from the government’s decision to have a minimalist form of universal health care that is mostly limited for personal emergencies rather than collective emergencies.

There is something lacking at the philosophical level in the Canadian system. Universal health care in Canada was not conceived with a pandemic in mind, it wasn’t imagined as a collective public problem, it was thought of with a liberal ideology of fixing personal health problems, in order to help individual employers keep individually healthy workers. There was no thought given to collective health crises such as pandemics.



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