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Old 05-17-2008, 06:36 PM
 
414 posts, read 1,469,235 times
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My retired spouse and I are fed up with the health care situation here. He is covered by Medicare with a supplemental policy since retiring a year ago. I am too young for this so we've been looking for coverage for me and our two daughters (aged 20 and 16) since our COBRA ran out. We are having a hard time being ACCEPTED by a company. We are hoping to pay under a thousand dollars a month for medical, dental and eye care.

If we are fortunate enough to be accepted into the club of the insured, we can expect to have a deductible of $1,500 per year.

Now I'm starting to wonder if we shouldn't just buy a home in Canada and apply for health care there. Is that allowable, does anyone know? We'd expect to pay taxes of course and I'm sure they'll be high but it's better than having to beg for coverage. I never thought this would happen to us.
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Old 05-17-2008, 08:43 PM
 
1,915 posts, read 4,601,535 times
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Default Not easy

I don't think US citizens can buy property and move to Canada and then apply for their health care. Based on my research (Canadian Immigration website), there are very limited options for moving to Canada legally (skilled worker, family ties, independently weathy-business class). US citizens are only allowed to live in Canada 6 months of the year as visitors. I have friends who have owned property in Canada for a long time, and they are limited to the 6 months rule.

I recently checked with Canadian immigration about how a US citizen can stay in Canada for a 6 month visit and was told that one has to prove to the border officials that you intend to leave after 6 months. Not sure how to do that. They told me it is up to the border official whether to let you stay for 6 months or not. I think you also need to prove that you have health insurance before you go there for an extended visit (up to 6 months) as well as show them your bank statements (that you have funds to support yourself while you are there). Visitors can't work.

Canada isn't easy to immigrate to unless you have family connections or are a skilled worker (young, educated, speak English and French, and have skills they are looking for). If you are independently wealthy, you need to invest sizeable amounts in the Canadian economy and not live off passive funds (for example, an IRA).
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Old 05-17-2008, 08:48 PM
 
1,915 posts, read 4,601,535 times
Reputation: 1340
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kathleenh54 View Post
My retired spouse and I are fed up with the health care situation here. He is covered by Medicare with a supplemental policy since retiring a year ago. I am too young for this so we've been looking for coverage for me and our two daughters (aged 20 and 16) since our COBRA ran out. We are having a hard time being ACCEPTED by a company. We are hoping to pay under a thousand dollars a month for medical, dental and eye care.

If we are fortunate enough to be accepted into the club of the insured, we can expect to have a deductible of $1,500 per year.

Now I'm starting to wonder if we shouldn't just buy a home in Canada and apply for health care there. Is that allowable, does anyone know? We'd expect to pay taxes of course and I'm sure they'll be high but it's better than having to beg for coverage. I never thought this would happen to us.

The other option is to move to a state that has to accept you for individual health insurance regardless of your health problems: Maine and Massachusetts have guaranteed issue policies, not inexpensive, however.

If it has been less than 63 days since your COBRA ran out, you are "HIPPA" eligible, and would have a wider range of states to choose from for acceptance for an individual policy. Not all states, but more than ME and MA. You can Google "individual health insurance" and find out about how states vary in their laws.

It's criminal, IMO, that the US is the only developed country without universal health care for its citizens.
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Old 05-18-2008, 06:05 AM
 
Location: home...finally, home .
8,235 posts, read 18,505,219 times
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I agree. Just watch SICKO again to be reminded of that.
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Old 05-18-2008, 07:46 AM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
30,671 posts, read 49,416,421 times
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We live fairly near to the Canadian border.

Since our ERs are not allowed to turn away patients. We see Canadians coming here for their medical treatment. There are a host of things that the Canadian health care system does not cover.

So while you are discussing going there, many of them are coming here.
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Old 05-18-2008, 08:10 AM
 
Location: Lakeland, Florida
6,972 posts, read 12,478,001 times
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Your plan sounds very good, and I can understand your wanting to move there and have the health coverage you should have in your native country. However to live in Canada on a permanent basis is next to impossible for an american. Canada's rules and immigration policies are very strict and I understand them wanting to keep them that way. Its a wonderful country and common sense and respect for their citizens has kept them that way. Really for an american to remain beyond a 6 month visit in Canada would be very difficult.
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Old 05-18-2008, 09:59 AM
 
Location: Tennessee
34,667 posts, read 33,667,394 times
Reputation: 51854
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kathleenh54 View Post
My retired spouse and I are fed up with the health care situation here. He is covered by Medicare with a supplemental policy since retiring a year ago. I am too young for this so we've been looking for coverage for me and our two daughters (aged 20 and 16) since our COBRA ran out. We are having a hard time being ACCEPTED by a company. We are hoping to pay under a thousand dollars a month for medical, dental and eye care.

If we are fortunate enough to be accepted into the club of the insured, we can expect to have a deductible of $1,500 per year.

Now I'm starting to wonder if we shouldn't just buy a home in Canada and apply for health care there. Is that allowable, does anyone know? We'd expect to pay taxes of course and I'm sure they'll be high but it's better than having to beg for coverage. I never thought this would happen to us.
May I ask whether health insurance is offered by the jobs that you and your 20 year old daughter have?
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Old 05-18-2008, 10:16 AM
 
4,628 posts, read 9,270,056 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xz2y View Post
It's criminal, IMO, that the US is the only developed country without universal health care for its citizens.
Amen to that.

I've done a lot of research in different states, and the prices (deductible and premiums) generally average out to the same. I simply don't know how people keep their heads above water, especially if they have children.

Surely, there are many things wrong with the Canadian system. I have knowledge only from my Canadian friends: their children are covered for everything - 100%, and there is no waiting to get in to see a doctor. If either of the adults has an emergency, they are seen immediately, and pay a very small portion of the bill. If their problem is anything less than an emergency, like elective surgery, they are put on a waiting list of up to 3-6 months, and more. Inconvenient by our standards, so maybe that's why Canadians head down here. I just don't see any longer why our system is superior, if people who've worked hard their entire lives are not able to afford health care.

ERs must see you, but only to stabilize you. If you don't have a doctor who's ordered follow-up care, the ERs will not provide that. At least here in Portland, and I suspect most other places as well.
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Old 05-18-2008, 11:07 AM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
30,671 posts, read 49,416,421 times
Reputation: 19124
I am retired military, so I do understand that my situation is different from most others posting here.

I do have a medical coverage provided for me at any US military base [on condition that it does not detract from the care provided to active duty personnel [AD], I can be treated after all AD have been treated if that day's working hours have not been exceeded yet, otherwise we sit in the waiting room for the next day, hoping that eventually we can be seen.]

I am also eligible for Health insurance coverage, where we pay enrollment fees; office visit co-pays; and drug co-pays. This system is on condition that we stay away from military bases. The best part of these insurance policies is that we can be treated in civilian hospitals by civilian doctors, so we are seen by doctors who have been through college and medical school. This is a significantly higher level of medical care, as compared to that begin provided by corpsmen. Not intending any slight to corpsmen, after 24 years of being treated by corpsmen, my Dw being treated by corpsmen, my children being delivered and then treated by corpsmen; they do a wonderful job [so far as any 18 year old kid with OJT training could do].

We do seriously prefer our medical care being provided to us by doctors with college and medical school background.

I have known many folks whose plans have included retiring overseas. There are many nations where English is the local language.

I think that you might find a favourable situation, in both a lower cost-of-living, and health care coverage by immigrating to one of those nations.

The list of nations where English is the official language is long, and it includes:

India,
Australia,
New Guinea,
New Zealand,
Jamaica,
Trinidad,
Fiji,
Guyana,
Solomons,
Malta,
Bahamas,
Vanuatu,
Saint Lucia,
Grenadines,
Micronesia,
Kinbati,
Grenada,
Seychelles,
Dominica,
Antigua,
Marshalls,
Palau,
Nauru,
Guam,
Virgin Islands,
Samoa,
Gibraltar,
Cook Islands,
Turks,
Anguilla,
Falklands,
Pitcairn.

Looking at many of these places the standard of living would be significantly different and might well offer great opportunity to folks willing to move there.
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Old 05-18-2008, 01:15 PM
 
414 posts, read 1,469,235 times
Reputation: 170
Quote:
Originally Posted by xz2y View Post
The other option is to move to a state that has to accept you for individual health insurance regardless of your health problems: Maine and Massachusetts have guaranteed issue policies, not inexpensive, however.

If it has been less than 63 days since your COBRA ran out, you are "HIPPA" eligible, and would have a wider range of states to choose from for acceptance for an individual policy. Not all states, but more than ME and MA. You can Google "individual health insurance" and find out about how states vary in their laws.

It's criminal, IMO, that the US is the only developed country without universal health care for its citizens.

Thanks so much for that response, I'm going to take your advice and do some checking around.

I completely agree about universal coverage for our citizens and have thought this for a long time. Too bad Hilary Clinton blew her chance to resolve this issue or at least make some progress.
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