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Comparing health-care systems – a personal journey

Is Canada in a health-care crisis? If you’ve kept up with the news, obviously, yes. Are the causes for this similar to other places in the Western world? Again, yes – aging populations and retiring clinicians are putting pressure on many Western systems.

So, does our salvation lie in privatizing health care, like the United Kingdom or the United States? Hmmm.

During my professional career, my family and I lived in four different countries (including Canada). Each country has significant differences in the delivery of care and how it is paid for.

Since its broader inception in 1968, Canada’s health-care system has been providing clinical care for nearly all health conditions for all residents. It’s been shaped by the ethos that no one in need is denied care. This was the system, warts and all, that I grew up with. My family and I then left for a series of multi-year foreign assignments. This essay is about those first-hand experiences.

United States


United Kingdom



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