Governments Make Us More Vulnerable in a Pandemic

By Lee Friday


This article focuses on Canada, but the analysis applies in every country to varying degrees, and in most countries to a very significant degree.

Even before COVID-19, Canada’s socialized healthcare system was characterized by a decades-long failure to make good on a government promise “to make sure that people could get care when it was needed without regard to other considerations.” Hundreds (possibly thousands) of Canadians die each year because they have universal access to waiting lists, but not to actual healthcare.

It is within this context that we should consider the government’s draconian response to the coronavirus pandemic: quarantine orders and business closures enforced by the jackboot of government, which is less concerned about the total number of infections and deaths than it is with spreading those numbers out over a long period. This attempt to flatten the curve to avoid suffocating a healthcare system that was already on life support will likely have the following consequences:

  • More deaths due to longer waiting lists for non-COVID-19 care
  • Stress, anxiety, and despair for millions who are now unemployed
  • Stress, anxiety, and despair for millions who are in isolation
  • More substance abuse, crime, suicides, homicides, child abuse, domestic violence, divorces, and cardiovascular disease due to the effects of unemployment and isolation

Dr. Roger McIntyre, a psychiatrist and professor at the University of Toronto noted:


Leave a Reply