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Discuss Canadaís Medicare System and your personal experience with it.

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  When I first arrived in Canada, I heard much controversy about ďMedicareĒ. I was so curious about the subject that I began to take note of all Medicare news. In some ways, I am grateful for Canada's national medical care system as it ensures that everyone has equal opportunity in receiving health care services and certain medicines. However, there are some issues that have arisen within the system and I will detail them as well.

(Describe present situation) I am sure many Canadians have used the Medicare system, either with free doctor visits or referred physiotherapy visits. I once injured myself from a car accident. During this period, I found it helpful that a large percentage of my physiotherapy treatment was covered while I only had to pay ten dollars for each visit. In addition, the program also covers hospital ward care and surgeries, except elective surgeries such as cosmetic plastic surgery. Furthermore, people with disabilities also have their home nursing and medicines covered. My elderly uncle has all his prescriptive medicines covered by Medicare. This benefit alleviates the financial stress in his family.

(Describe problems) However, there are some obvious problems with the public health system. Some reports say that some patients have to wait more than a month for an operation. My best friend had to wait almost two months for a magnetic resonance imaging scan. This led to physical suffering as well as her dependence on drugs to alleviate her pain. Furthermore, some working people have ended up on disability insurance as they are unable to work until they undergo proper treatment. With an aging baby boomer generation, the problem of long waiting lists will become more serious.

(Describe solutions) Some solutions to our health care problems lie in addressing the lack of doctors and nurses. There should be more student placements in the universitiesí medicine programs as well as in nursing programs. Furthermore, doctors and nurses should be well paid and receive enough incentives so that they arenít easily lured away by American hospitals. There should also be accessible orientation programs for foreign doctors and nurses who have immigrated to Canada. Some foreign doctors have to undergo rigorous medical training despite their vast medical experience. Fast tracking such skilled labour helps reduce waiting list problems and also ensures that we arenít wasting the medical skills of our immigrant population.

Favouring our public health care system over a two-tier system has been an emotional topic as it touches the heart of the Canadian identity. It is an issue that separates Americans from Canadians ideologically. Not only that, but our health care system is so closely connected with our living standards. Personally I believe that itís best to preserve and improve our Medicare system as this ensures the welfare of the larger population.

(460)

 
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