Terminology Course: March 27, 2014

health care

In this session, health economics was one of the subjects of discussion. A short definition of the term, taken from Termium Plus, is put as follows:

“A scientific discipline that seeks to apply the principles and rules of economics in the health care field.”

If this doesn’t seem to be clear enough, what better example than comparing health economics in Canada to the United States. What comes out of the comparison is a complete difference in how both the Canadian and American public view the issue.

Taking a look at some of the statistics shows how baseless preconceived notions can be. For example, while practically all Canadians have access to health care, how is it possible that the United States (where many people have no health care insurance) has to spend more in health care than Canada? And if private health is so much better in the United States, how can it be that Canada has much better numbers when it comes to mortality rates (both infant and adult), life expectancy, and so on?

In Canada, health care is seen as a right, while in the United States, for some reason, it is a luxury. In the United States, health economics became a lucrative business, while in Canada, though perhaps lucrative as well, is at least much more limited for private entities.

I am aware the Canadian system has other problems such as waiting times or physician availability, but, considering all aspects, it seems a much better deal than what our neighbors in the south are getting.


“health economics.” Termium Plus, Web, 2014.


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