Close Encounters with Single Payer Healthcare in Western Europe

By Laure Fergy
March 2019

In President Obama’s weekly address on June 6, 2009 he famously said, concerning Obamacare: “If you like the doctor you have, you can keep your doctor…”

I personally believe that the former President was mocking the very people who had voted for him: the American people who, generally speaking, have not taken into account – or even learned about – the negative impact socialized medicine has had in other parts of the world for decades already.

Indeed, in England, families are not at liberty to choose their local family doctor but are assigned one, whether they like who is assigned to them or not.

  • A trip to the doctor would take a long time because the waiting room would be packed full of sick people and the average waiting time would be over an hour long.
  • Once you finally meet, the doctor would never have enough time to fully diagnose you; prescriptions are written after just a few minutes.
  • When someone needs to simply have their tonsils removed, for example, as was my personal case, the waiting list would be … twelve days? No. Twelve weeks? No. Above twelve months long!
  • A pregnant woman is not given any special treatment even when her health demands urgent care; she is simply lumped with other patients until she is six months pregnant, regardless of contagious diseases, etc.

In France, lengthy sick leave is more like house arrest.

  • The sick person must be at home between the hours of 9-11 AM and between 2-4 PM from Monday through Sunday so the social security inspector can check up on you to make sure you are sick. There are no exceptions to this rule. When my mother injured her foot at work, it took over a year to heal. She was unable to travel anywhere, let alone lead a normal life for this lengthy period of time.
  • Vaccinating children is 100% compulsory, regardless of one’s philosophical, medical or religious beliefs.

Socialized Medicine is contrary to liberty of choice and movement, and crushes one’s independence.

About the Author – Laure Fergy lived in England during the 1970s and in France from the mid-‘80s to 2003.


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