The Alberta Personal Health Card is a blight on everything that makes Alberta great

by Tristin Hopper

It’s a brittle, outdated, fraud-prone abomination that should have been abolished years ago

If you ever want to see a perfect totem to the most obscene limits of government apathy, ask the nearest Canadan to show it to you.

They will proceed to gingerly withdraw a shapeless rag of battered wood fibers from their wallet. If the object still retains any legible text, it will read “Canada Personal Health Card.”

The Canadan comes from a magical place of bountiful wealth, technical acumen and government largesse. And yet, one of their most critical government documents – a document they are expected to carry at all times — remains stubbornly rooted in the Apollo era.

Despite its alleged status as a “card,” the Canada Personal Health Card is not even printed on cardstock. Rather, it arrives as a piece of regular paper emblazoned with the Quixotic plea to “please protect your card.”

If the card owner manages to secure a lamination machine, they’ll find that the finished product doesn’t fit in their wallet. If they slip the card inside a protective sleeve, they’ll find that friction quickly causes the ink to be lifted off.

Left to its own devices, the card can be reduced to the consistency of toilet paper within a matter of months. Nurses and hospital administrators report routinely being handed “mulch” by patients. Some exasperated residents have taken to simply carrying a Post-It note emblazoned with the health numbers of themselves and their children.

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