Single payer health care: man denied medical treatment is offered euthanasia

Fraser Institute, 2015: the cost of single payer health care
Fraser Institute, 2015: the cost of single payer health care

What sort of health care can you expect in a system where you pay mandatory taxes to government bureaucrats whose primary purpose is to buy votes in order to win re-election? Can these bureaucrats be trusted to give you the health care that you’ve paid for?

Well, in Canada, health care is paid for by mandatory collection of taxes from those who work. You don’t pay for what you use, you just pay based on what you earn. The more you work, the more you pay in taxes. But paying more in taxes doesn’t mean that you will get treatment. In Canada, you’ll get behind people who don’t pay a dime into the system. You’ll wait for months. And you’ll be waiting in line behind people who want IVF, abortions, sex changes, and free heroine injections. Because in Canada, health care is just vote buying. The healthiest hardest working people pay and don’t use. The laziest and most irresponsible people don’t pay and use too much.

But there is one thing that the Canadian government will do for you – they’ll offer to murder you in order to keep you from draining health care dollars away from the people whose votes need to be bought.

Evolution News explains:

[…][A] Canadian man with serious disabilities has been refused coverage for independent-living services — but offered payment by Canadian Medicare for the costs of obtaining a lethal jab. From the CTV News story:

[Roger] Foley’s request to the Centre for Independent Living in Toronto (CILT), where he was directed to apply, was denied last year. Foley asked for a review of that decision, but his lawsuit alleges that the review process has been delayed multiple times as the CILT defaulted on deadlines.

So he hired lawyer Ken Berger.

“We don’t really understand why it’s not being solved and why we’ve had to file this lawsuit for Roger,” Berger, who specializes in health law, told CTV News. “We really didn’t want to reach this stage, but we were left with no alternative.”

According to Foley’s statement of claim, the only two options offered to him have been a “forced discharge” from the hospital “to work with contracted agencies that have failed him” or medically assisted death. Refusing to leave the hospital and unwilling to die by a doctor’s hand, Foley claims he has been threatened with a $1,800 per day hospital bill, which is roughly the non-OHIP daily rate for a hospital stay.

Can you imagine the screaming if a private health-insurance company were alleged to have forced these alternatives on a man with disabilities wanting assistance for independent living? The screaming would be heard in China.

But this is socialized single-payer socialism. So, expect a much more muted response.

Coercion to “choose” assisted suicide or euthanasia will come in many guises. This is one of them. Those with eyes to see, let them see.

Let me tell you something very important. You cannot demand quality from a service or product provider if you have already paid them. The time to ask for a lower price or higher quality is when you have your money in your pocket. That is why we are so happy to buy things from, but not so happy with the Postal Service or the Bureau of Motor Vehicles. Where there is competition, there is higher quality at a lower price. The free market works better than a government monopoly.

2 thoughts on “Single payer health care: man denied medical treatment is offered euthanasia”

  1. I had caught the story about this guy not long ago. What a mess. It’s the slippery slope people warned about when “assisted suicide” was first being brought up. People in the disability community are pretty divided over it. Yes, some are in favour, but most I know see it as a gateway to euthanasia, and devaluing of the lives of disabled; making it easier to dispose of inconvenient people.

    I do want to clarify, though; this happened in Ontario. Each province runs its own medicare system, so if he were in, say, Alberta, he would have gotten the independent living care he needed. There are quite a few such programs available. Interestingly, Alberta is the most conservative province in Canada. Independent living programs resulted in better health outcomes and less care needed, which in turn saved the system money. Win/win.

    Also, the idea that people needing one type of care have to wait in line behind people with another type of care is inaccurate. Wait times are different from province to province, but also between rural and urban areas. If you’re in a rural area, good luck finding a doctor at all. Heaven help you if you live in a fly-in community!

    Plus, we do need private health insurance, too. Medicare doesn’t cover everything (no dental, limited physiotherapy, no drug prescriptions, though some provinces have pharmacare, no glasses/contacts, etc). My husband currently uses the health care system a lot, but we’ve also paid into the system for many years. My husband is now on long term disability, and if it weren’t for his private insurance, we would have been financially ruined within months.

    For what’s covered by the system, we have no wait time for basic care and a variety of specialists. Typically, we can go to the doctor, get a requisition for labwork and Xray, walk over to another part of the clinic and get that done right away. The results are typically in to the primary care physician within a day or two. Specialized care (such as getting into the pain clinic in the city), has waiting lists, as to more specialized tests (such as CT Scans; fewer places have such large equipment). Getting certain types of surgery can be difficult, but that has more to do with bureaucratic inefficiency and artificial shortages. Someone needing a hernia operation isn’t going to be made to wait because someone else wants a sex change operation. They’re going to be made to wait because there might be a dozen people waiting for hernia operations ahead of them. Even then, there is triage. The most urgent cases get bumped to the top of the list, whenever possible.

    Our system does have its problems – this case is just one example – but what is done in one province cannot be assumed to apply to the other provinces and territories.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s