By Martin Patriquin - Monday, November 19, 2012 - 0 Comments
Quebec goes exploring in medical tourism market
The term “medical tourism” may conjure images of clinics in far-flung countries that offer a tempting proposition: world travel and cut-rate surgery. Yet a Quebec clinic hopes that Canadians will instead think of a warm bed, perhaps an invigorating facial scrub at a renowned Quebec City spa and the chance to skip the clogged lines that are the reality in much of the Canadian public medical system.
“Mix prevention with pleasure” reads the brochure for Fairmont Le Château Frontenac’s medical tourism package, which charges $1,000 for a two-night stay in a suite, including a massage and a complimentary bottle of wine. Medical examination costs are the client’s responsibility. The service, “a first in Canada,” according to the luxury hotel chain, is available to Canadian residents, and promises “VIP treatment” with “wait-free access to your medical professional.” Medical tourists visiting Quebec can avail themselves of six various tests, including mammograms, CT and PET scans, as well as a virtual colonoscopy. These are provided by Radiologie et Imagerie Médicale de la Capitale (RIMC), a Quebec City-based private clinic.
“We cater mostly to a business clientele who don’t have much free time,” says Jacques Lévesque, a radiologist and medical director at RIMC. “We had patients coming here from outside Quebec City, even from outside the province, and we were forever hindered with the fact that they had to leave the same day, so we partnered with Fairmont.” Continue…
By Julia Belluz - Monday, December 5, 2011 at 10:24 AM - 26 Comments
“The evidence is very, very clear that the core provision of health services is more effectively done through the public model.”—Roy Romanow, Nov. 27, 2011
It’s an exciting time in the world of health care. Like our neighbours to the south and other developed countries across the ocean, we’re in the midst of another discussion about the future of our health-care system. But there’s one debate that rears its head no matter what decade we’re in: private versus public health-care. After a meeting on the new health accord in Halifax last month, Roy Romanow—the former Saskatchewan premier who led a landmark commission on how to improve the health system in 2002—stated very clearly that expanding “private” care would be perilous. But does the evidence support the mighty Romanow’s claim?
Defining public vs. private care
Before we go any further, let’s clear up what private and public funding and delivery means in the Canadian context. Continue…
By Aaron Wherry - Thursday, September 8, 2011 at 11:05 AM - 12 Comments
Five and a half months removed from cabinet, Stockwell Day says we must summon the courage to consider two-tier health care.
By stubbornly refusing to allow the development of a modern system that allows those who can willingly afford it to buy services, while still providing properly for the rest of us, we are dooming every provincial budget … if we continue to demonize every MLA or MP who wants to at least look at the options and possibilities then we condemn ourselves to higher costs, higher deficits, higher taxes and lower levels of care. Even the socialized systems of European nations allow for fee for service (translation: two tier) systems.
“Two-tier health care” is a rather fraught phrase that can be interpreted variously, but the idea of “fee for service” health care is seemingly what Mr. Day rejected when confronted with this issue in 2000.
By Aaron Wherry - Monday, November 8, 2010 at 5:04 PM - 150 Comments
Liberal MP Keith Martin sets out his do’s and don’ts of health care reform.
Don’t allow people to pay to jump ahead of the queue in the public system. Don’t allow people to divert taxes to private services. Everyone will pay taxes and ALL will have access to the public system. This is akin to our education system that has private and public schools. People who pay tuition for their children to attend private schools still pay taxes that pay for public schools….
Do allow people to pay for health care services in completely separate private clinics. ONLY private monies would pay for these clinics and services.
By Aaron Wherry - Tuesday, October 26, 2010 at 1:55 PM - 0 Comments
Martin writes that instead of “tinkering” with the system, governments must “modernize” the Canada Health Act to allow patients to “pay for care if they wish, in entirely separate facilities funded solely by the private sector.”
Under such a system, writes Martin, Canadians could go to these centres and pay for the medically necessary treatment out of their own pocket or through private insurance they have purchased. ”By leaving the public system, they will be shortening the queues for those who are waiting. People using private facilities from time to time would also be free to access the public system that their taxes are paying for. Private facilities would act as a release valve and would in effect be subsidizing the public system. Physicians and other medical personnel would work in both systems.”