Ok I have a question which has just recently come to mind over something which passed across my desk not too long ago:

A local 26 year old guy from Canada had to make an unexpected trip down to the US and was in a traffic accident. Since it was a short notice trip and all that, he did not get any travel insurance. Apparently he needed a lot of medical treatment and still in a hospital down in Florida as the bills rack up. Of course there is a thing going around now to see if anybody can shell out some money to help out the family with the medical bills, but I got to thinking for a second or two......

WTF should he have to pay? I mean maybe I'm missing something, but I'm guessing he's paid enough taxes in Canada over the last 26 some odd years of his life for medical coverage, which we all receive when we goto the hospital, require medical treatment, etc. Why the hell isn't the Government of Canada compinsating him and his family by paying the medical expenses in the US? He is a Canadian Citizen, who's paid his taxes, and if he was in Canada and the accident occured here, there wouldn't be an issue to begin with.

This isn't just an isolated case, but occurs a lot to many Canadians and other citizens of countries with similar medical systems like ours. Sure, perhaps they should have gotten some traveler's insurance or what not, which would have solved this issue.... but why should we have to put money into taxes for medical coverage and then have to shell out more money for a seperate medical coverage when we decide to leave the country for whatever reason, be that pleasure or business?

From the Government's Web Site:


Health Canada's Role

The federal government, the ten provinces, and the three territories have key roles to play in the health care system in Canada. Health Canada's mandate is to help Canadians maintain and improve their health.....


So how come that suddenly disappears when we step out of the country?

FAQ's in Relation:


Do I need private health care coverage when travelling outside Canada?

In relation to out-of-country health insurance coverage, the federal health insurance legislation, the Canada Health Act, requires provincial and territorial health insurance plans to provide portability of coverage for insured medically necessary hospital and physician services when temporarily outside one's home province or territory. The portability criterion of the Act does not entitle one to seek services in another country, but is more intended to entitle one to receive necessary services in relation to an emergency when the absence is temporary, such as on business or vacation. However, because of the high costs associated with health care in some foreign countries, reimbursement for emergency health care by a province or territory may not be made at the full amount. Therefore, it is recommended that when travelling outside Canada, individuals are encouraged to purchase private insurance to ensure adequate coverage. Individuals who seek treatment out-of-country without prior approval from their provincial or territorial health insurance plans may be required to bear the cost of the services received.

^ Ok that last line..... what?

Hey there P.Government of NS... I'm gonna get hit by a car tomorrow while i'm in the US for a couple of days, is that ok?

What sort of screwed up explination is that?? What a lovely loop hole that is. They first start off stating that "The portability criterion of the Act does not entitle one to seek services in another country, but is more intended to entitle one to receive necessary services in relation to an emergency when the absence is temporary, such as on business or vacation." ~ Which was the case above.

Then they claim the provincial government may not reimburse the emergency in full due to the cost in another country.... yet they leave it open that they would at least do that.

Then throw in that "Ask us first" loop hole?

Does anybody else see something a little screwy with this? Do you know or have you yourself been someone who's been in this situation having to cover medical bills from an accident or emergency in another country?

I mean, exactlly how great a coverage are you truly getting anyways when you pay for some private health insurance when you travel? Already there's a plague in the US with Health Insurance companies not paying out, or labeling certain proceedures as "Experimental." ~ What kind of protection do we really get when we leave the inside of our borders?

How at risk is our health when we visit another country?

How much money are we each actually losing out on when we do?

During the time I spent outside of the country, can I have those tax dollars back? I mean they don't do me any friggin good when I'm outside of the country, so why should they take taxes for that period of time? Or is that tax deductible?
Last edited by Praxius; Feb 14th, 2008 at 02:31 PM..