In the United States, much has been made of the elective surgeries and procedures deemed nonessential by hospitals across the country.
Hip replacements, colonoscopies, endometrial biopsies — all of those are considered nonessential in the current climate.
Say what you will about all of that, but that beats Canada’s reaction. In Ontario, thanks to the state-run health care system there, at least 35 people died because the surgery docket was cleared to account for a COVID-19 surge that never came.
You notice I didn’t say “nonessential surgery.” That’s because very essential surgery was canceled, too.
“The acknowledgment followed modelling from the University Health Network (UHN) concluding unresolved cardiac problems have proved fatal and Ontario’s independent Financial Accountability Office (FAO) calculated more than 50,000 operations and treatments of all types have been postponed in the pandemic,” Ontario’s The Star reported.
“A report has been released today by UHN with respect to cardiac deaths and it has been estimated that approximately 35 people may have passed away because their surgeries were not performed,” Health Minister Christine Elliott said at a news conference with Ontario Premier Doug Ford.
“That’s not something any of us want to hear. It certainly was not intended,” Elliott added. “Any death is a tragedy.”
But rest assured, they feel compassion for those whose lives had to make way for coronavirus beds that were never needed.
“We feel for those families who have lost family members whether it has been from cancer deaths or cardiac deaths or a COVID-19 death, but these were decisions that we had to make,” she said.
And yet, you don’t want to blame Elliott, even though she was the health minister. You don’t even want to blame Ford, even though he was in charge of the province and is best known as the slightly less flamboyant brother of a late Toronto mayor you may have heard of.
Instead, what’s to blame is the Canadian socialized health care system.
“Decisions on delayed treatments were made by teams of doctors and other medical professionals as per pandemic plans written years ago,” Elliott said.
In other words, this was the playbook all along. The chief medical officer in Ontario did say that doctors should act if the patient were to deteriorate, however.
“Nothing stops the physician from moving that on,” Dr. David Williams told reporters, adding that the crisis should “not circumvent any patients that need urgent care.”
But here’s the thing: How would they know?
Were they going to be installed in the homes of these individuals? Were their families going to have a hotline to these doctors?
They were COVID-obsessed at this point, after all. Are we to assume, given the evidence we have, that they were going to be able to act as effective patient advocates when their entire focus was coronavirus?
And that focus, it turned out, was misplaced.
Quoth The Star: “A feared surge of novel coronavirus patients never arrived in Ontario, as it did in New York City and Detroit, and that has left hospitals that are usually full, at 69 per cent occupancy, said the FAO report.”
“It found as many as many as 12,200 surgeries and procedures are being postponed weekly, with the tally reaching 52,700 as of April 23 and climbing daily.”
And yet many on the left in the United States can’t stop blaming President Donald Trump for coronavirus deaths and arguing that a Canada-esque system would be better than what we have.
Dozens of people were left to die in Ontario because Canadian socialized medicine planned poorly during the early days of the coronavirus crisis. They died not because of the disease but because their government deliberately neglected them to focus on COVID-19 patients who never materialized.
And the damage might not yet be done.
“The longer procedures are postponed the worse health outcomes Ontarians could have and the harder it will be for hospitals to eventually clear the backlog,” The Star reported.
And yet government officials will no doubt blame the pandemic for these deaths. They shouldn’t be allowed to pass the buck here; these deaths are all on government rationing.
This is what the Bernie Sanders crowd wants. The left envies Canada’s system, yet this is what “Medicare for all” will become.
Enjoy your future.
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.