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'My son and I would not be alive today if it wasn't for Canadian healthcare'

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Dear American neighbours,

I suffer from a chronic condition that requires me to see a doctor several times a year to obtain prescriptions and the like.  I would not be able to afford this without our one-payer system of health care.  The result for me would be a life of chronic pain. 

Our system allows for full autonomy by health professionals, and provides us with quality care at no cost except for the taxes we all pay, and which we are happy to pay in order to obtain this service.  The system in Canada costs less per capita than that in the U.S., and everyone is covered.  Good for us!

Paula Mallea

Manitoulin Island, Ontario


Dear American neighbours,

Embrace government supported health care, you will not be disappointed!

I have grown up in Canada and never ever have I had to think twice about seeking medical attention due to costs or anything else.

I have never made over $30,000/yr and I have never had to pay a dime for my health care coverage.  The more money you make the more you are expected to pitch up towards your health care coverage here but it is never an unreasonable amount of money - the scale is public information. It only seems fair that those who can pay pay and those who can't don't.

All peoples are treated within our health care system as equals.  No one ever asks you your income level when you seek medical attention because it is not relevant to the care received!

Not for one split second in my entire 36 years in Canada have I been made to feel less or more than anyone when it comes to medical care. Believe me, I have been through my share of emergencies, hospital stays as well as taking care of family through end of life care.  Our system works, it is easy and it is non-biased.

Please, when you hear someone spreading fear and negativity look at who they are and what their motive behind their stance may be.  Look to the people who are experienced with this type of system before you decide.

All the best to my southern neighbours, may you come to an informed decision and be happy in that.




Dear American neighbours,

I'm a US citizen born in NYC who moved to Toronto over 30 years ago precisely because health care in the States was beyond my financial reach.

When I got pregnant at the age of 19, my mom who was already living here sponsored me to come to Canada to have my baby because I couldn't afford to do so in Philadelphia, where I lived at the time. I had just been layed off and broken up with my boyfriend. I came to Toronto and when my son was born he had a number of congenital abnormalities that have over the years required several surgeries and various other medical interventions.

I did not go home after his birth because I realized I would have had to live in debt and impoverished for the rest of my life, paying for my son's care. At the same time he may not have gotten the care he needed in the US because of my financial situation. Two years ago I had a problem that was resolved with surgery that would have cost me thousands of dollars that I don't have if I were living in the States. Or maybe I would have been left to die as so many Americans are when they are refused coverage by corporate insurers.

Call it medicare, single-payer or socialized medicine as you like. My son and I would not be alive today if it wasn't for Canadian healthcare.

Zainab Amadahy


Dear American neighbours,

Our 2-year old was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia in 1980. We researched the best place in the world for his treatment and found it was Toronto's Hospital for Sick Children. Our pediatrician recommended the top Haematologist/Oncologist, who became his doctor. Our son was treated to the highest standards and nothing was spared in his treatment, including an attempted bone marrow transplant. Our total costs after six years? Subsidized parking. My mother tried to tell us that if we had lived in the US, it would have been OK because "people would have passed the hat." In reality, his bills would have bankrupted us.

Karin Brothers,




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