Friend found out that a number of people her friends knew were coming to Canada to give birth. Paying for private medical care. The issue of “instant citizenship” was one matter, but the other question for her is why people from outside of Canada could pay for preferred medical care, while people within Canada could not.
Turns out it is becoming bigger business in Canada, with certain hospitals setting up specific programs to welcome foreign payors:
Canadian patients cannot pay for treatment in a publicly funded hospital. That would violate Canada’s Health Act. But foreign patients can.
And it’s been happening inside hospitals at Toronto’s University Health Network – known as UHN – for more than three years.
Pierre Laplante has been a nurse for some 40 years. He was shocked back in the spring of 2012 when he started asking questions about some patients from Libya…
Since 2011 UHN has treated 621 foreign patients, mostly cancer and cardiac patients, from 23 different countries. Those patients generated nearly $30 million in profits.
“I was point blank told at this stage of the game that they were bringing in revenues for the unit.”
The hospital profited from these patients. And few, if any, Canadians knew about it until Laplante went public. “I don’t feel as a nurse, as an Ontarian, as a Canadian that I was properly consulted on having these patients brought here. It’s medical tourism without Canadian knowledge.”
When a Canadian wishes to pay for accelerated service, the Canadian must go to another country.
What comes up in these conversations is the Australian health care model–private and public sector choices…