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Taxing Your Healthcare

December 2nd, 2009

A quick story. My son decided to play organized football last spring. We signed him up, picked up his equipment and off he went. He did eight or so practices, 2 – 2 1/2 hours of hitting drills, usually in the rain. Then one glorious, sunny Saturday it was game time, his first ever football game. Five minutes later he was lying on the field, tibia and fibula broken.

Off to the hospital he goes, where they drug him up, set the bones and give him a hip to toe plaster cast. My 80lb son had a 10lb cast hanging off his torso. The cast was a menace to the poor boy, he needed help getting out of bed because his poor leg couldn’t possibly sustain the weight of the thing. He was in more pain four days after getting the cast than he when he got it. The cast was, to be blunt, a necessary menace.

Three weeks after the Mastercard moment (A full leg cast and a painkiller grin: priceless), he went in for a check up. “Off with his cast,” the doctor, of whom I have no complaint, announced. “Half cast for this boy.” Fortunately, I noted a list on the wall that mentioned lightweight fibre casts, $40 for a child, ½ leg. “What about one of those,” I suggested. No problem.

That’s health care in Ontario: free, but were giving the 12 year old a cast that’s 10% of his body weight. Any lighter, and you pay. Two weeks later the bill arrives for $42: $40 for the cast, $2 GST. That means, of course, that a year from now the cast will cost $45.20: $40 for the cast, $2 GST and $3.20 provincial HST. Nice, they sell you the cast, then they tax it.

Dalton McGuinty’s HST: Health Services Tax.

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  1. old white guy
    December 2nd, 2009 at 08:48 | #1

    just one of the benefits of living in a socialist society. vote for socialism, pay for socialism.

  2. james Isherwood
    December 2nd, 2009 at 09:13 | #2

    Socialism also paid for the hospital and doctors. What would your son’s visit have cost you in the U S and remember if you were paying insurance what would be the cost. I would think a little more than 2.50,

  3. Neville
    December 2nd, 2009 at 10:29 | #3

    And what? We aren’t paying for health care through our extremely “high” taxes. Healthcare is free eh! In the old days before subsidised healthcare, my dad paid for a familly of 12 with “Bluecross”. It didn’t break him financially and we were all looked after. Because he wasn’t blead dry from taxes he was able to by a home and feed us all on “one” salary.

  4. December 2nd, 2009 at 19:23 | #4

    Neville, what you said just made me stop and think. Health Care takes 50% of our government’s expenses, so that means 50% of what I pay in taxes goes to health care, all things being equal.

    Say cut my taxes in half if we didn’t pay for health care. I might not even need bluecross. I haven’t had a doc in 6 years, since the previous one informed me once I did need him, that since I didn’t see him at least once a year, needed or not, I was no longer his patient and he refused to see me… well he had his receptionist tell me that.

    So based on my health, my lack of access or need, with 50% more money in my pocket, and my general donations to charitable organizations with the money I have now, if I had more, I’d give more…

    To causes like organizations that assist people in tough to receive health care, sounds like one I’d want to collect for.


    I think I would not mind paying for health care as required as opposed to this al la carte where I pay and my doc won’t even let me see him when I need him and tosses me away because I won’t see him when I don’t.

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