I started this thread so I and others can vent about their local health care.
I live in Quebec and in many ways the government funded health care is awful. One example is that they have abandoned preventative medicine. There is a recent New Yorker article by Atul Gawande about how Costa Rico has gone all in on preventative medicine and the marvelous results they get. It is unfortunately behind a paywall, but here is the link: Costa Ricans Live Longer Than We Do. What’s the Secret? | The New Yorker.
Long ago Quebec started disallowing annual checkups for grown-ups; they are now going to disallow them for children. A few decades ago, they started to encourage new doctors to go out to the underserved rural areas by paying a financial penalty for setting up in Montreal. It worked and now there are no new doctors in Montreal. As a result, when my family doctor retired in April (not Covid related) and I started to call around to medical practices nearby, it turns out that none of them, 0, are taking new patients. I asked about a wait list. Nope. The province “guarantees” you a primary care physician. So I contacted them last November (I knew the retirement was imminent) and yes they guarantee a primary care physician, but the expectation was that it would take a year and a half! And might be in the other end of the city. And my wife and I might be assigned different doctors. We are, incidentally, 83 and 84. If one of us requires acute care, the only choice is an emergency room. But for ongoing problems, no help. For example, owing to various drugs I take I am supposed to have some blood tests every six months. I have not had the tests in over a year. (I should mention that our doctor gave us prescriptions for two years when he retired.)
A few years ago, the province paid a lot of near retirement age nurses to take early retirement. Now they are offering a bonus to come out of retirement. I think a lot of that is Covid related. But they are desperately short of doctors as the above suggests. Many of the doctors who didn’t want to go out to the sticks simply moved to Ontario or BC or even to the US.
On the other side, general medicare is free. Dentistry, eye glasses, hearing aids are not covered, however. We pay an annual premium that covers most our prescription costs. Still, I have to say that the government funded medicare isn’t all it’s supposed to be.