Melissa, a blogger, compared the health care offered in the U.S. and in Canada. Despite her hesitation about the universal health care system of Canada, she was able to prove that health care in Canada is even better than health care offered in the U.S.
She was surprised to find that Canadians really do adhere to their routine check-up schedule, which makes it easier to treat and prevent illness at an early stage. During her time in Canada, health care was very costly since every doctor check-up had co-pays, or co-insurance, and there was an annual deductible to meet. Preventive care wasn’t 100-percent covered back then. Now, health insurance plans are required to cover preventive care with no out-of-pocket costs.
When she was living in the U.S., she was afraid of quitting her job (no matter how low the compensation) as long as health insurance was offered. She feared losing her coverage and facing medical debt. One in five bankruptcies in the U.S. is due to medical debt, and most of those befell people who had health insurance plans.
It was the exact opposite in Canada. People there don’t stick to a job that they don’t like for fear of losing health care benefits. And, it has been a life saver to the residents of Canada.
Melissa said the only complaint she heard about the universal healthcare system was the waiting time before people could get medical care. But, wait times were actually shorter in Canada than in the U.S., and the wealthy were not “favored” over others there.
Luckily, Melissa was privileged to have a high-deductible policy paired with a Health Savings Account (HSA). She could use the HSA funds she saved to take care of the remaining medical bills left by her high-deductible policy when she had a miscarriage.
Health Savings Accounts are really popular because they help you save on taxes and health care. Withdrawals are tax-free as long as you use the funds for qualified medical expenses. The unused funds roll over year after year, so you can let the balance grow with tax-free interest to build a retirement account.
Wiley Long is President of HSA for America, and a passionate advocate for consumer-based solutions that will improve price transparency and lower health insurance and medical costs for people purchasing individual and family health insurance plans.