I think that both the Canadian and US health care systems stink. My dad waited 18 months for a brain scan that his two brothers in South Africa - and my cousin in New Zealans - got the next day.
At the same time, the US system sucks too. My brother's a healthy guy, but his health insurance in Washington DC was astronomically expensive. And he found out how crazy the system is when he went for tests at a hospital down there.
The scan cost $5000. His deductible was 20%. So the hospital bills the insurer. Then the insurer negotiates them down to $2500 - just like that! And he was on the hook for $500.
This is a silly and arbitrary way to do things, IMO, and it seems par for
the course in the States. Those who are insured, end up subsidizing those who aren't, anyway, so why don't they implement a basic universal coverage, that also has checks against abuse?
My proposal is this:
1. Everyone gets a health card, that they take with them every time they go to a doctor, get a prescription, get a dental checkup, chiropractor, etc. There is no cash changing hands, but the services are registered on the card. (Unless the client elects to pay cash)
2. At the end of the year, the bill arrives. The client must pay the full amount, or 15% of their annual income, whichever is less.
3. Optional coverage would then be available from the private sector, that can reduce the liability. Since the proposal bases liability on income level, the lower the income, the lower the liability. Such policies would be regulated so as to disallow variance in premiums, based on health status.
I believe this would preserve a measure if free-market and personal decision making, while at the same time, ensuring that everyone is free to get the health care that they need - if they are so inclined.