NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis


May 24, 2004

Touted as Nirvana for decades by America's left, Canada's monopoly health care system -- the only one in the world save Cuba -- is breaking down badly.

Vancouver's Fraser Institute finds that in comparing Canada to other Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries that provide publicly funded universal access, Canada seriously underperforms its peers.

  • While Canada ranked No. 1 in spending as a percentage of gross domestic product in 2001, it ranked in the bottom half of the pile in per capita doctors, MRI machines and CAT scans.
  • In addition, they found that Canada has less age-adjusted access to physicians and technology, longer waiting times, and more costs and deaths from preventable causes than any other national health systems.
  • Furthermore, while the government forces the majority into government hospitals, it bends the rules for officials and bureaucrats, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, injured workers receiving workman's compensation and prison inmates -- all of whom qualify for private clinic access.

The study did not include the United States and Mexico, neither of which have "comparable objectives."

Source: Mary Anastasia O'Grady, "In Canadian Health Care Some Are More Equal Than Others," Wall Street Journal, May 21, 2004, and Nadeem Esmail and Michael Walker, "How Good is Canadian Health Care?" Fraser Institute, August 2002.

For WSJ text (subscription required),,SB108509308825117436,00.html


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