7.23.2006

question

You might want to catch up on comments in this thread.

Franc has posted a terrific link to the International Dialects of English Archives (IDEA) where you can hear all kinds of dialects for yourself. Great stuff, Franc, thank you!

Another reader pointed out that if my reference to nude beaches drew traffic, the post called "tongues" is sure to drive the Statcounter wild.

* * * *

Do any of you know anything about Americans stealing Canadian health care cards in order to get health care? This is another question from Egalia at Tennessee Guerilla Women, part of her never-ending quest to drive neocons insane.

I found various links about health care fraud, but nothing specifically about this. I know the Ontario cards were recently re-designed with more security measures. Is this why?

13 comments:

James said...

Do any of you know anything about Americans stealing Canadian health care cards in order to get health care?

Not a thing. Seems very odd, though -- doesn't Rush himself say that they have the Greatest Health Care System In The World? Why would they want to be on Canadian waiting lists? :)

L-girl said...

Seems very odd, though -- doesn't Rush himself say that they have the Greatest Health Care System In The World? Why would they want to be on Canadian waiting lists? :)

Exactly. That's why the idea sends the neocons into spasms.

Lone Primate said...

I remember hearing, back in the early 90s, that there was an inventory of records done and that at the time there were something like 150,000 more current OHIP cards than there were Ontarian residents. Since people here illegally are unlikely to poke their heads above the radar, the speculation at the time was that most of them were in the hands of US citizens, mostly in NY, Michigan, and Ohio. Naturally, that was just speculation, since if they could prove it in the first place, the fraud would have been evident from the outset. I don't know what the numbers are now, but it was probably a lot easier in the 70s and 80s to latch onto an OHIP card than it is today.

Marcy said...

I just stumbled on your blog, and I have to say, you've inspired me! I have been thinking about immigrating to Canada for years. I checked into the redtape a few times over the years, and I guess I thought it was too daunting. But having read through your archives, I now am ready to tackle it. I moved across the country by myself, and I think that has also given me the courage. I mean, if I can live anywhere I want, why not live where I REALLY want to? I used to joke a few years ago that if Bush got re-elected that I would defect to Canada.

Well, now I'm gonna do it!

shane said...

Hello Laura,

There was an issue about 10 years ago with the apparent selling, and renting out of health care cards. This is the main reason the picture ID was brought in. Originally it was just a plastic red and white card with a number on it. No identifiers whatsoever, so there was potential for abuse.

L-girl said...

I have been thinking about immigrating to Canada for years. I checked into the redtape a few times over the years, and I guess I thought it was too daunting. But having read through your archives, I now am ready to tackle it.

Wow! Thanks for letting me know. Feel free to email me with questions as you go along. And keep us updated on your progress!

I moved across the country by myself, and I think that has also given me the courage.

Excellent. I can see how that would happen. Stay in touch.

L-girl said...

Hi Shane! :)

There was an issue about 10 years ago with the apparent selling, and renting out of health care cards.

Ah, selling and renting! Canadians profiting from their excellent system. It makes sense that some people would try to do that.

This is the main reason the picture ID was brought in. Originally it was just a plastic red and white card with a number on it. No identifiers whatsoever, so there was potential for abuse.

I've seen the old cards and of course I have a current card - so I wondered if that was the reason for the change, at least in part.

Too bad I can't find anything documenting this online.

I remember hearing, back in the early 90s, that there was an inventory of records done and that at the time there were something like 150,000 more current OHIP cards than there were Ontarian residents.

Mm-hm...

Scott M. said...

From hansard...


Hon Mrs Grier: The member from Nipissing has thrown around and in his press release yesterday made a number of very extravagant statements about the misuse of OHIP numbers, and I want the House to clearly understand that the member yesterday said there might be 60,000 fraudulent claims submitted by non-residents using US drivers' licences. He took that from the report that was done within the ministry, and I want members to understand how that figure was arrived at.
For a period of time, checks were done in two hospitals, in hospitals in Windsor and in Kingston, two border cities. Everybody presenting at that hospital was asked for verification as to the fact that they were residents of Ontario; 752 patients were asked to verify that they lived in Ontario. Five of them produced US drivers' licences. The study then took that number and presumed that that ratio, 752 to 5, held all throughout the year, all across the province of Ontario. If that worst-case scenario was in fact the case, then there might well be 60,000 people with US drivers' licences who also have OHIP cards.

I think to draw from that the conclusion that was reached at the public accounts committee by the deputy minister, that in fact there are between 1% and 2% of the OHIP cards that are owned by people who are ineligible to use them, that is in fact the dimension of the problem we are now attempting to deal with.

Mr Harris: This was your ministry study that was put out. These were people in Ontario hospitals who volunteered. Volunteered -- they didn't have to produce anything. These are the ones who volunteered they were US citizens. How many more do you think were smart enough not to volunteer? How many do you think were smart enough not to volunteer? The study, and the people who did the study, think it's low. They think they're low at 60,000, and that's what they have said.
We discovered yesterday and it will be confirmed tomorrow that the Treasurer plans to cut approximately $600 million from hospitals and from health care services. Here we have, by the minister's own study, the one Michael Decter covered up and wouldn't release and wouldn't give the committee and talked absolute different numbers about, here we have more than $600 million in absolute, irresponsible waste.

I would ask you this: How do you, as the minister responsible for this deputy some of the time, and how does the Premier have confidence that Michael Decter tomorrow is going to go into your so-called contract negotiations with any credibility -- with any credibility -- when his ministry has frittered away by pure and simple mismanagement, and then covered it up, more than the $600 million you want to take away from the sick and the elderly?


Hon Mrs Grier: For the member to suggest that the deputy minister, in submitting to the public accounts committee an outline of all the studies that were under way, is to in fact cover up the fact that studies were being made is, I think, a gross exaggeration and leads me to believe that the member is more interested in undermining the credibility of Mr Decter than he is in protecting our medicare system.

L-girl said...

Scott, thank you! What an excellent idea - looking in Hansard.

Scott M. said...

Scott, thank you! What an excellent idea - looking in Hansard.

Comes naturally, I used to deliver them.

I really can't complain that I never had a lot of job experiences before I went full-time... can I?

Lone Primate said...

Comes naturally, I used to deliver them.

Fascinating... even the mundane seems strangely interesting. Human beings do love their politics, don't they? :)

Scott M. said...

The legislative page program was an amazing experience... one that helped shape me to what I am today. A note in the Hansard from the end of my session:

Hon. Mr. Conway: If I might, because the hour is late, I want to take this opportunity on behalf of myself and my colleagues to wish a very good summer to our distinguished group of pages who are leaving us today after a number of weeks of great industry.

I just want to say I have spent some 13 years in this assembly and I have seen many classes of pages come and go. Over the 13 years I do not remember, I say to the table, a group that has been quite as lively as this particular group. They have added a certain spirit that I think honourable members would do well to emulate.

On behalf of all here assembled, I want to thank the young ladies and gentlemen for their wonderful contribution and tell them that we will long remember their spirit. We wish them well in their summer holidays and in the great future that we know awaits them all.

L-girl said...

The legislative page program was an amazing experience... one that helped shape me to what I am today. A note in the Hansard from the end of my session:

Really cool. :)