Canadian cancer patient told condition untreatable, doctors offer government-assisted suicide—she gets life-saving surgery in the US

“How can you prioritize cases so that people with aggressive stage four cancer get seen by someone and when they do get seen, they get offered treatment and not MAiD like I was the first time?”

A Victoria, BC woman with abdominal cancer had to go to the United States for a life-saving operation because wait times in Canada are so long.

Allison Ducluzeau told Global News that after being diagnosed with cancer she was told she was eligible for Canada’s Medical Assistance in Dying (MAiD) program before any significant medical assistance was offered.

She began feeling pain in her abdomen in early November 2022, had some tests done and waited for an appointment with her family doctor. Then she collapsed.

“In November, I ended up at emergency because the pain was just getting progressively worse,” she told Global. “I didn’t get to sleep one night and I woke up my now husband and said, I think we better go to emergency. So we did. And when I was there, I got a CT scan or I was booked for one the next day and the results of the CT scan indicated it looked like it might be something called peritoneal carcinomatosis, which is abdominal cancer.”

Only after further tests revealed she had stage 4 cancer, did her doctor refer Ducluzeau to the BC Cancer Agency. A consulting surgeon with the agency told her she wasn't a candidate for surgery, despite her family doctor stating that a HIPEC procedure, in which chemotherapy doses are delivered into the abdomen, was what is usually done to treat this type of cancer.

"Chemotherapy is not very effective with this type of cancer,” Ducluzeau said the surgeon told her. “It only works in about 50 percent of the cases to slow it down. And you have a life span of what looks like to be two months to two years. And I suggest you talk to your family, get your affairs in order, talk to them about your wishes, which was indicating, you know, whether you want to have medically assisted dying or not.”

Ducluzeau got another opinion, in which the doctor confirmed HIPEC was the procedure she needed, and sought treatment in the US.

“I had to fly to California to get one of my diagnostic scans done there, a PET scan, because I wasn’t getting in here and I had to pay to have another CT scan done when I got to Baltimore because they couldn’t get it in time before I left,” she said.

The cancer agency couldn’t tell Ducluzeau how long it would take to see an oncologist – weeks, months, maybe longer. Her expected survival time without an operation was anywhere from two months to two years. 

“And I said, ‘Well, will it help if my doctor phones on my behalf?’ And they said, ‘no’. And my doctor submitted my referral again and still no word. No word at all from (BC Cancer) until after I flew to Baltimore, had my surgery and got home.”

“I am so proud of where I live and being a Canadian and (living in) Victoria, I just never thought in a million years that that would be my experience,” she told Global. “I was disappointed and, in fact, disgusted by the way I was treated.”

Ducluzeau has some advice for Canada’s healthcare system: shorten wait times

“How can you prioritize cases so that people with aggressive stage four cancer get seen by someone and when they do get seen, they get offered treatment and not MAiD like I was the first time?”

“Universal healthcare really doesn’t exist,” Ducluzeau said. “My experience is it’s ‘do it yourself’ health care and GoFundMe health care.

Wait times have become such an issue for Canadians that tens of thousands of them leave the country to seek medical treatment elsewhere — usually the United States. In 2016, over 63,000 Canadians sought foreign health care, according to a 2017 report released from the Fraser Institute.

Socialized medicine in Canada is also not exactly free. The think-tank reported that the average Canadian family spends over $12,000 in taxes on government-funded health care.

Sign in to comment


Powered by StructureCMS™ Comments

Join and support independent free thinkers!

We’re independent and can’t be cancelled. The establishment media is increasingly dedicated to divisive cancel culture, corporate wokeism, and political correctness, all while covering up corruption from the corridors of power. The need for fact-based journalism and thoughtful analysis has never been greater. When you support The Post Millennial, you support freedom of the press at a time when it's under direct attack. Join the ranks of independent, free thinkers by supporting us today for as little as $1.

Support The Post Millennial

Remind me next month

To find out what personal data we collect and how we use it, please visit our Privacy Policy

By signing up you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy
© 2024 The Post Millennial, Privacy Policy | Do Not Sell My Personal Information