Publisher's note: The author of this post is Mitch Kokai for the John Locke Foundation.
Sally Pipes writes
at National Review Online about problems exposed in Canada's single-payer health care system.
- Medicare for All may not be a part of Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden's agenda. But the rest of the party is smitten with the idea of a federal takeover of our health-insurance system.
- Senator Kamala Harris (D., Calif.), Biden's running mate, co-sponsored Senator Bernie Sanders's (D., Vt.) Medicare for All bills in 2017 and again in 2019. Last week's Democratic National Convention, meanwhile, featured speeches from many of single-payer's most visible proponents, from Sanders and Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (N.Y.) to Senator Elizabeth Warren (Mass.) and progressive activist Ady Barkan, who runs the Be A Hero PAC and suffers from ALS.
- In fact, the moderates and progressives within the Democratic Party largely agree that they want to work toward Medicare for All. They just disagree on how to get there, and how fast.
- A detour to Canada should disabuse them of their fondness for single-payer. Our northern neighbors wait months for routine care and lack access to the latest life-saving medications and technology. Importing this system would lead to widespread misery.
- I know firsthand. I was born in Canada and watched the government-run health-care system there turn a blind eye to my mother's suffering. After experiencing stomach pain, she requested a colonoscopy but was denied one because of her age; there were too many younger people ahead of her on the waiting list. By the time she got one, her cancer had become untreatable. She died shortly thereafter.
- I've been educating Americans about the pitfalls of single-payer for years. ...
- ... But Canada's health-care system does not merit praise.
- Long waits for care are a fact of life in Canada. Last year, the median wait between referral from a general practitioner and receipt of treatment from a specialist was nearly 21 weeks.