Be sure to read this story on National Review. It's a tale of a man battling Canada's socialized healthcare system.
I know many people, including my father, a nurse, are rather infatuated with socialized medicine. I must admit, the idea of "free" health care for all does sound appealing. I say "free" because it isn't really free, since we end up with much higher taxes for it. But Canada did one better for its people by making it illegal for people to use private healthcare for what public healthcare can offer. This problem resulted in a system that is overclogged and often insufficient due to attempts to keep costs low.
The hero of the story, Dr. Jacques Chaoulli, was forbidden from making house calls to patients who couldn't leave the house. Other patients of his were required to live with horribly painful conditions because the social system had such long waiting lists.
While I appreciate that being unable to afford medical treatment is a lamentable situation, forcing those who can afford it to languish and sometimes die while waiting for substandard treatment is just as cruel, maybe even more so. Proponents of socialized medicine in America would do well to remember this.