Topics: Universal health care, Health economics, Health care Pages: 12 (2948 words) Published: April 30, 2014

Health Care System Comparisons - United States Verses Canada Beth Glasener Ware
Marylhurst University
April 18, 2014

Author Note
This paper was prepared for HCM 510, Ethical Health Care Management, taught by Professor Browne. Health Care System Comparisons – U.S. VS. Canada 2 Abstract

This paper defines both The United States Health Care System and the Canadian Health Care System. It compares the significant differences between the two. It provides in full detail the single-payer system verses the multi-payer system. Medical spending and administrative costs are outlined and compared. Wealth and Health is thoroughly explained regarding the impact it has on health care in the U.S. It also details the impact it would have as a Health Care Manager if the U.S. implemented a single-payer system. The paper is concluded with facts as to why the U.S. government should implement a single-payer system. The research comes from online (Internet) and offline (non-Internet) sources including books, articles, posts, websites and videos. Keywords: United States Health Care System, Canadian Health Care System, U.S. verses Canadian Health Care Systems

Health Care System Comparisons - United States Verses Canada Significant Differences – U.S. Verses Canada
In regards to health care reform, the Canadian system is often held up as a possible model for the U.S. The two countries' health care systems are very different-Canada has a single-payer, mostly publicly-funded system, while the U.S. has a multi payer system, heavily private system-but the countries appear to be culturally similar, suggesting that it might be possible for the U.S. to adopt the Canadian system. (O’Neil, 2007).  Much of the appeal of the Canadian system is that it seems to do more for less. Canada provides universal access to health care for its citizens, while nearly one in five non-elderly Americans is uninsured. Canada spends far less of its GDP on health care (10.4 percent, versus 16 percent in the U.S.) yet performs better than the U.S. on two commonly cited health outcome measures, the infant mortality rate and life expectancy. (O’Neil, 2007). Single-Payer Health Care System

If equity and social solidarity in access to health care and financing health care were fundamental goals of a health care system, the single payer system provides an ideal platform for achieving these goals. Single-payer systems typically are financed by general- or payroll taxes in a way that tailors the individual’s or family’s contribution to health-care financing to their ability to pay, rather than to their health status, which until this year has long been the practice in the individual health insurance market in the U.S. These systems protect individual households from financial ruin due to medical bills, such as health care bankruptcy. Single payer health systems typically afford patients free choice of health-care provider, although at the expense of not having a freedom of choice among different health insurers. Remarkably, in the U.S. households have some freedom of choice of health insurers – to the extent their employer offers them choice – but most Americans are confined to networks of providers for their insurance policy. In other words, Americans appear to have traded freedom of choice among providers for the sake of choice among insurers. (Cheng & Reinhardt, 2012) In single-payer systems “money follows the patient.” Therefore providers of health care must and do compete for patients on the basis of quality and patient satisfaction, but not price. In a single payer health insurance system, health insurance is fully portable from job to job and into unemployment status and retirement. The “job-lock” phenomenon prevalent in the US is unknown in those systems, contributing to labor-market efficiency. Because...

References: Cheng, Tsung-Mei & Reinhardt, Ewe. (2012). “Perspective on the Role of the Private
Sector In Meeting Health Care Needs,” in Benedict Clements, David Cody and Sanjeev Gupta, eds
O’Neil, June E & O’Neil, David M. (2007). The National Bureau of Economic Research
(NBER) Comparing the U.S
Morra, D,; Nicholson, S. & Levinson, W et al. (2011). “U .S. Physician Practices
Spend Nearly Four Times as Much Money Interacting with Health Plans and Payers Than Do Their Canadian Counterparts.” Health Affairs
Aldeman, L. (Producer), & Poulain, R. (Director). (2008). Unnatural causes: In sickness and in
wealth [Television series]
Palfreman, J. (Producer & Director). (2008). Sick around the World  [Television series].
Goldsmith, S. B. (2011). Principles of health care management: Foundations for a changing
health care system (2nd ed.)
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