In many ways, I feel our medical system in British Columbia is on life support. We have unprecedented wait times for surgery. This is after waiting for scans and 4 – 5 months waiting times to see a specialist. Once you get there, you are well taken care of.
But, this is not preventative medicine. An active person who cannot be active for months, will likely have other medical issues as a result of this delay. In addition, if they are a senior, they may never return to that level of activity again, which can place more stress on the health care system.
I do not blame the doctors or other health care workers. I blame the bureaucracy for the failing general health system. With the exception of the emergency room physicians, GP’s refer patients out to specialists much more than in the past. This creates huge delays in treatment because of the wait times, and likely results in overuse of prescription and non-prescription drugs.
The treatment of those with life-threatening illnesses and injuries is second to none but for those who are compromised but do not fit the urgent category, it can be life-changing with severe consequences to quality of life. This affects other supports such as employment insurance, social assistance, and family members. Also, not to forget, if they were working, loss of production, loss of taxation for the government and communities.
In British Columbia 43% of our provincial budget goes towards health care. We need to work towards a preventative health model, not a reactive one. Dentistry did this years ago with great results. Growing up most people had false teeth by the time they were 40. Now the majority go to the grave with their own teeth. It can be done.
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