For health care, look to the Dutch

‘Re: ‘There are better solutions than just more money to fix our health care’

  • Oct. 25, 2016 7:00 a.m.

‘Re: ‘There are better solutions than just more money to fix our health care’, a letter to the editor in the Oct. 20 edition of The NEWS.

In his letter, Robert Tritschler infers a concise conclusion about our health care system, namely, it is a monopoly with inherent corruption and inefficiencies. Defenders of this deficient system want to maintain the status quo in our government-controlled increasingly unsustainable health care system.

People are suffering severe pain while having to wait for necessary orthopaedic surgery for more than a year or two. Not surprising, use of dangerous pain-killing drugs while waiting for surgery cause further damage to essential organs.

Defenders of the status quo like to compare the dual private and government insurance option with the scary health care costs in the United States. Instead, we should look to the Netherlands where per person costs are comparable to Canada while there are no long waiting lists for either private or public services.

In 2015, the Netherlands maintained its number one position at the top of the annual European health consumer index, which compares healthcare systems in Europe, scoring 916 of a maximum 1,000 points. The Netherlands has been in the top three countries in every report they have published since 2005.

The Netherlands was also ranked first in a study comparing the health care systems of the United States, Australia, Canada, Germany and New Zealand. Moreover, among major developed countries, Canada ranks in second last place ahead of the United States when it comes to efficiency in the delivery of health care.

The Netherlands has the right policy, freedom, timely and affordable health care services whether through private or public resources. It is time for Canada to emulate the best-in-class.

Anthonie den Boef

Nanoose Bay

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