Canada's wonderful robo-surgeon. But can they afford it?

August 16, 2007  ·  Michael Fumento  ·  Weblog

The neuroArm, as I write in TCS Daily, is a wonderful Canadian invention that goes beyond robotic surgery, the main advantage of which is no shaky scalpels. It also allows neurological operations inside an MRI machine, sending the surgeon a continuous stream of 3-D images as well as video. This could revolutionize brain surgery. I'm certainly going to hold off on getting a brain tumor until they're commercialized. Unfortunately, it may be almost entirely an export item. You see, one thing Michael Moore didn't mention in his schlockumentary "Sicko" is that Canada's vaunted socialized medical system isn't keen on expensive medical equipment. In fact, Canada ranks thirteenth among 20 OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) countries with only 4.6 MRI scanners per million people, while Japan and the United States had the highest number with 35.3 and 19.5 per million respectively. Without MRIs, neuroArm is just another robo-surgeon. But the issue will be moot if the nation's health administrators decide they can't afford the neuroArm either. Socialized health care sucks.