Wednesday, July 01, 2009

So if we adopt their wonderful health-care system, where WILL Canada

send people? Kevin linked to this article; here's a piece of it, with some information I hadn't heard before:
Infant mortality rates are often cited as a reason socialized medicine and a single-payer system is supposed to be better than what we have here. But according to Dr. Linda Halderman, a policy adviser in the California State Senate, these comparisons are bogus.

As she points out, in the U.S., low birth-weight babies are still babies. In Canada, Germany and Austria, a premature baby weighing less than 500 grams is not considered a living child and is not counted in such statistics. They're considered "unsalvageable" and therefore never alive.

Norway boasts one of the lowest infant mortality rates in the world — until you factor in weight at birth, and then its rate is no better than in the U.S.

In other countries babies that survive less than 24 hours are also excluded and are classified as "stillborn." In the U.S. any infant that shows any sign of life for any length of time is considered a live birth.

A child born in Hong Kong or Japan that lives less than a day is reported as a "miscarriage" and not counted. In Switzerland and other parts of Europe, a baby is not counted as a baby if it is less than 30 centimeters in length.

In 2007, there were at least 40 mothers and their babies who were airlifted from British Columbia alone to the U.S. because Canadian hospitals didn't have room. It's worth noting that since 2000, 42 of the world's 52 surviving babies weighing less than 400g (0.9 pounds) were born in the U.S.

It must be embarrassing to Canada that a G-7 economy and a country of 30 million people can't offer the same level of health care as a town of just over 50,000 in rural Montana. Where will Canada send its preemies and other critical patients when we adopt their health care system?
But our system is 'unsustainable' and needs to be changed to the same kind of mess that Canada and Britain has. Yeah. That'll work.

1 comment:

Windy Wilson said...

The devil is, as they say, in the details. A quote attributed to Benjamin Disraeli:" There are lies, damned lies, and statistics."
I believe also, George Orwell said, "All statistics boil down to the town constable putting down whatever he damn well pleases", or words to that effect.

So, if American Medical care retains its same policies and procedures, but the statistics kept use the same definitions as Canada and Europe, our infant mortality rate should be a non-zero number smaller than Canada's or Europe's.