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Wednesday, March 01, 2006 

Slightly Used Bedpans For Sale, Cheap - Ask for Ralph

"On November 10th, 2004, Premier Klein told a Red Deer audience that, 'private health care operators can save money by using second hand equipment.'" (Alberta NDP)

This would seem to be the other part of Ralph Klein's vision for health care. Cut rate equipment, cut rate supplies - remember they do stuff like this in the U.S. Then remember why their malpractice insurance costs so much. Then remember that the unnecessary billing bureaucracy in the U.S. and their massive profit extraction causes U.S. health care to cost about 15% of GDP compared to about 10% in Canada (Christian Science Monitor - Dec 2003), and 45 million Americans have no health insurance and many more have limited coverage - estimated at around 60 million underinsured (multiple sources).

"One of the main culprits pushing up the cost of care in the United States is the expense of administering a plethora of complicated health plans. It has been estimated that any large health insurer in a midsize U.S. state spends more on administration than is spent on health administration in all Canada." (San Fransisco Chronicle - Oct 14, 2004)

The same San Fransisco Chronicle Chronicle article says "Dr. Catherine Kurosu is a gynecologist at two San Diego hospitals. A Canadian, she said the biggest differences between the two systems are that poorer Americans won't seek medical care until their problems have become serious. In addition, she said, American insurers often play games to avoid paying bills."

"When it comes to billing, the Canadian system is a simple matter of sending an invoice to the Ministry of Health, which pays on a fee-for-service basis, she explained. In the United States, there are so many insurance companies, each with its own rules covering not only the patient but also the doctor -- as Kurosu learned when she had to wait months for an insurance company to approve her.

U.S. health insurers 'nickel and dime' doctors by always sending bills back and questioning everything, she said. 'It's like a game to see how long they can forestall payment.'"

Is this the vision we as Canadians have for health care?

The Fathers of Canada’s Deconfederation ...

Do yourself a favour: dig out the Robert Harris painting of the 37 Fathers of Confederation. Now place before you photos of Stephen Harper and each Premier.

These are the new Founding Fathers of Canadian Deconfederation. Some artist should start work on a painting similar to that of Harris, to record for posterity the faces of these new Fathers.

Why? Because these men are now busily and stealthily engaged in the constructive deconfederation of Canada, under the guise of Harper’s “New Federalism” and “fiscal imbalance.”

They are avoiding open discussion in Parliament and their respective Provincial legislatures, because they know that there would be an outcry from citizens should it become apparent – through such debate – that these men are trying to do in private rooms, that which could not survive in the light of day. They are agreeing – without mandates from their respective voters – to change the nature of our confederation in such a way as to significantly weaken the bonds that bind this country together.

You don’t believe me? Then google fiscal imbalance harper. Read the commentaries you will find referred to there. Read Sinclair Stevens. Read Andrew Coyne.

Listen to the modern Canadian Paul Revere’s, riding furiously to warn citizens, crying One if by open debate, two if by stealth.

And then do your part as a citizen of Canada: Light two lamps, to signal to the body politic that their Confederation is being stolen from them by stealth.

I suppose that the nurses could rinse off all of the tongue depressors and reuse, that would save money. We could rinse out the colostomy bags and reuse, that would save money. We could change the bedding in the hospitals every 2nd or 3rd day, that would save money. We could ensure that if you can't afford healthcare, you could just die, that would save money! Leave it to the private sector to find ways to make efficiency and that is what you would have.

Nothing but typical Conservative thinking. People only deserve the minimum. The fact is King Ralph would probably be happy to completely eliminate public insurance. He's , just, not that Politically stupid, yet.

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