Digging through old boxes of stuff occasionally turns up a real gem like this Ontario Medical Association fee schedule from 1950. It lists the standard fees that doctors should charge patients for various medical procedures, house calls, and lab tests. Read below the fold for a few scans from inside.
It’s somehow comforting to know that a leg amputation cost just $100 (in addition to the $15 anaesthetic for “major surgeries,” $3 for the initial office visit, and assorted other fees). Or you could get your leg shortened for just $150, or lengthened for $200. Another page lists the standard fee for having a single dislocated toe reset at $10, with each additional toe being reset for half that, just $5 each. The 24-page booklet even lists electroshock treatments at a bargain-basement $10 per:
For someone who was born into OHIP, it’s a little jarring to read the OMA’s statements at the beginning of the schedule that a doctor “should acquaint his patient […] with his or her financial responsibility” and that “a third person should not enter into the financial relations between doctor and patient”:
“Waiters, barbers, etc.” could get a special “Free from Infection” medical report:
2 Replies to “Ontario Medical Association Schedule of Fees, 1950”
This is great. I see that they cloak the test for venereal disease as a Wassermann. “Hey doc, gimme a Wassermann, with a side of alcohol injection of gasserian ganglion.” (Yes, I had to look that up.)
I’d like to see a few more of your gems, Val. Get thee to the basement and start rooting about. Or would it involve a trip to an offsite, climate-controlled storage bunker containing the vast Dodgeville Archives?
Leg lengthening? Hell, do they still have that? I’m still only 5’4″, so even if it isn’t paid for by OHIP, I’ll have to look into it.
Interesting, as well, that they had house calls, even out into the “country”, which back them was anything north of what, Eglinton? Finch? Steeles?
I guess when we started getting “free” medical care, they had to cut something back…