If you are going to Alaska from the lower 48 it is best to fly or have a large bank account just in case.
Just found this at the US State Dept website:
MEDICAL FACILITIES AND HEALTH INFORMATION: The level of public health and sanitation in Canada is high. Canada’s medical care is of a high standard but is government-controlled and rationed. Quick and easy access to ongoing medical care is difficult for temporary visitors who are not members of each province’s government-run health care plans. Many physicians will not take new patients. Access to a specialist is only by referral and may take months to obtain. Emergency room waits can be very long. Some health care professionals in the province of Quebec may speak only French. No Canadian health care provider accepts U.S. domestic health insurance and Medicare coverage does not extend outside the United States. Visitors who seek any medical attention in Canada should be prepared to pay cash in full at the time the service is rendered. Traveler’s medical insurance is highly recommended even for brief visits.
All very good points but I'd point out a couple of things:
1. No one should ever travel out of the country without "out of country travel insurance". Take it from us Canadians, who never ever travel to the US without additional coverage. All the points listed in the US government site you refer to, also apply to Canadians traveling in your country (except the French stuff, Spanish maybe though). We have gone our whole lives without seeing a doctor or hospital bill so the prospect of an accident or sickness in the US with all the costs involved makes buying insurance a "no brainer".
2. Our experience has been "Emergency room waits can be very long" in US hospitals as well. The ones I've been in, in both countries, all work on the basis of the most in need of treatment get it first which means your sudden attack of flu may not be the first thing to get attention.
I agree that without insurance you may want to have a very large bank account. I friend broke an ankle (very bad break) while hiking in Arizona a few years ago. Spent 3 days in a hospital hallway before his insurance company confirmed to the hospital that payment would be made and when the final bill arrived it was just under $70000.00
In your case you are coming to the US and should be aware of insurance issues, my warning was for US citizens traveling to the US state of Alaska by road.
As you pointed out it is a two way street however my main beef is with Nancy Pelosi who said the US ObamaCare needed to be approved before we could find out what was in it, now Hillary Clinton in her website http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_1082.html is describing what we may encounter if traveling to Canada and is exactly what Pelosi was hiding from us.
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