Once again the vocal minority who fear and oppose any kind of change and/or possible improvement to our faltering health-care system are speaking out. Ms Woodley’s letter to the editor last week (Cambie Surgeries will cater to the rich) illustrates the consistently inaccurate arguments used to prevent real and positive change.
To suggest that those who are unwell and frustrated by a government-funded system, who wish to pay for private surgery or care, are “paying their way to the front of the line” is nonsense. They are merely choosing to step out of line and are actually making “the line” shorter. They are not “bumping” anyone. They are asking for the right to choose to join others such as professional athletes, federal and provincial prisoners, workers’ compensation payees, and numerous others who have much more immediate access to care. They are not “the rich.” They are just people who are sick and tired of being sick and tired. They simply feel they should have the right to timely and appropriate care. How naive to think that “our tax dollar-funded system does not determine the quality of care” one receives. How many valuable programs, health-care staffing numbers and operating room hours are rationed, reduced or dropped altogether as a result of underfunding? Many Canadian patients and doctors “like Brian Day” are merely those who feel that five to six hours a week of operating room time is not enough to address ever-lengthening surgical lists.
They understand that nothing is going to change the government’s approach to rationing care. These doctors and patients are doing what they feel is appropriate within a system that, for many, has been broken for too long.
I believe it will be a win/win when Canadians have the right to choose and have the ability to access quality care that improves their quality of life as it also relieves the pressure on the publicly-funded system.