Universal Health Care: What the United States Can Learn from the Canadian Experience

Pat Armstrong, Author, Hugh Armstrong, Joint Author, Claudia Fegan, Preface by New Press $24 (176p) ISBN 978-1-56584-410-0
This study will give pause to Americans who are hostile toward government-funded national health care, for readers are shown that such a program succeeds in Canada. The system is committed to five principles enacted in the Canada Health Act of 1984: the program is universal, portable, accessible, comprehensive and publicly administered. The authors (Pat Armstrong is director of the School of Canadian Studies at Carlton Univ. in Ottawa, Canada; Hugh Armstrong teaches social work at the same school; Fegan is a medical instructor at the Univ. of Illinois) have done prodigious research, and although they are boring writers, their book could serve as a position paper for U.S. advocates of universal government-funded medical care. The study tracks the genesis of Canada's system going back to 1947, then explains funding (tax revenues), administration (a single payer, the government) and one-tier delivery (rich and poor use the same hospitals and doctors). Many comparison statistics are included vis-a-vis the U.S. and Canada: Canada has one practicing physician per every 448 people, the U.S. ratio is 1 to 432; Canada has one nursing home bed for every 113 persons, the U.S. one for every 523; life expectancy for Canadian women is 81.3 years, for U.S. women 79.2 years; etc. In chapters discussing ""What the Problems Are"" and ""What the Problems are Not,"" the authors shore up their findings in a study that gives readers much to ponder. (June)
Reviewed on: 06/01/1998
Release date: 06/01/1998
Paperback - 176 pages - 978-1-56584-515-2
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