Sickcare not healthcare

I went into renew my “healthcare” card with our socialized card here in Ontario called “OHIP”.  Healthcare is the wrong name.  It should be called “sickcare” because unless you have specific illnesses which are treatable in the system, you get nothing from it.  Since living in Ontario, I have paid out of pocket or through private insurance for the following:

Dental care:  Teeth are not a part of “healthcare”, so OHIP does not cover any dental care.

Travel Clinic:  If you go overseas and get sick from malaria, hepatitis or yellow fever, you can come home to Ontario and be treated for free, that is if you don’t die first.  But if you want to have vaccinations, other kinds of preventative care, or even a travel consultation with a knowledgeable physician, you have to pay for it yourself.  Since I travel overseas frequently, I’ve paid hundreds of dollars in preventative travel care out of pocket.

Optometrist:  A few years ago Liberal Dalton McGuinty took over Ontario, and the province added a levy to everyone’s payroll taxes and eliminated services including a biannual optometrist check-up.  Less for more.

ChiropracticDr. Aubrey Green of Proformance Health & Wellness Inc. has “cured” me of a painful rotator cuff injury.  None of his treatments were covered by OHIP.  I probably could have gone to a GP (did I mention I don’t have a family doctor, and it is difficult to obtain one in Ontario?), but what would he or she have done except prescribe a painkiller?  Dr. Green used drug-free treatments of acupuncture (with an electric pulse), hands on soft-tissue massage, and a regime of rotator-cuff exercises.  After four weeks I feel very little discomfort and I am back on the basketball court shooting jumpers as Dr. Green promised.

Prescriptions:  All my prescriptions are covered by private insurance.

What has been covered by OHIP?  Last year playing basketball, a teammate elbowed me and I need stitches.  OHIP covered the emergency room costs.  I’ve seen my former family physician for scalp acne twice during the last six years and received an antibiotic prescription.  Because I’ve enjoyed basic good health I’ve had about four medical visits which were covered by OHIP in the last 15 years since living in Ontario.  Meanwhile I’ve made many visits to the travel clinic, the dentist, the chiropractor and the optometrist, and all of this is paid for through private means.  Healthcare is the wrong name. It should be called “sickcare” because unless you have specific illnesses which are treatable in the system, you get nothing.

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