Sometimes, my income was, uh, not income. So, my normal income was below the taxable level and, although I never visited a food bank or begged the government for money, my yearly income tax return was healthy. Withholding was about 18% each official check. At the end of the fiscal year, I usually got a couple thousand back in over-withholding.
If you read my post, you will note that whenever I needed medical attention, I have always been attended to within a very short time. Just today, during the covid precautions, I went to the walk in clinic for a tooth infection because (a) my family physician was on vacation because Monday was a civic holiday and, (b) because I was afraid to go to the ER. I waited in the walk in's parking lot for a half hour, spoke to the doctor via cellphone, and waited 10 minutes more for the pharmacy to give me amoxicillin with clavulanic acid ($18 buys HUGE pills three times per day for 5 days). That was 12 hours ago and my tooth swelling has gone down. A man and his family told me that because of covid, the ER across the street was almost empty and they were seen within minutes of arrival there. They came to the pharmacy for their prescriptions, too.
My two cataract surgeries were free. My colonoscopy was free. I had a colon problem and needed surgery. All free. Hospital stay of 5 days afterwards, too. Visit to get surgical staples removed, free. MRI's free. Wife's three MRI's free. Daughter's prenatal visits free. All our blood tests are free. Because I'm over 65, any glasses I need are free. (Don't need them anymore.) My blood tests (thyroid) are every three months; I'm in the office, blood sucked out, and walking out with a bandaid on my arm all within 15 minutes. Oh, jeez, I forgot: full body xray for some kind of bone cancer scan was free. Blood specialist (pretty female doctor, too!) free. Saw her three times. Years ago, I fell of my bicycle and hurt my shoulder. Walked to the ER, got xrays, Tylenol 3, and walked home all within two hours. Free. I had a sort of plane crash and walked away from it but was told to get a medical clearance anyway. Free. (Long story. A mechanic lied.)
Next door neighbor is a walking pharmacy of prescriptions because she's... should be dead from her conversations. She's had more surgeries, doctor visits, and all that I would imagine her actual medical costs are approaching a million or two. Free. Her marijuana is free. Medical reasons. I would have to pay for mine if I wanted any.
Because of covid, most of our economy stopped. The Canadian government is currently giving unemployed people about $2,000 a month. Last month, in addition to my regular government pension, I got an extra $500 just to insure I am financially okay.
My brother just had an MRI done. $4,000 not free. Knee surgery, $6,000 and counting. Not free.
No, I would not go back to the States and the current medical situation there even if I could go back. Medical care, at least where I live, is awesome, cheap, and readily available.