US continues its losing streak in health care quality comparison

2014-06-17_07-21-14 The U.S. spends the most of any country on its health care system, and yet it ranked the lowest out of 11 industrialized nations in overall healthcare quality, according to a report published Monday by the Commonwealth Fund.The report, which covered the years 2011-2013, compared more than 80 indicators of U.S. health care spending, quality and performance to the likes of Australia, the United Kingdom, France, Canada, Germany, New Zealand, and Sweden, among other developed nations. The UK, which was ranked highest, blew the U.S. out of the water, despite the fact that the country spends less than half as much on health care per capita $3,406 on average, compared to $8,508 in the U.S.. The U.S. also spends the most on health care as a percentage of GDP 17% than any other nation. SOURCE: US continues its losing streak in health care quality comparison – Yahoo Finance.

I am about to finish one of the six or so  books I read at the same time; this one about the culture of the United States. It shows numerous places where we are the most creative people on earth. But then comes our ideas of healthcare. We just can’t seem to understand that our current system of taking care of our citizens is a loser and a big waste of money by almost all standards. We spend twice as much as anyone but get so little for our dollars.

It seems idiotic but it seems we are opposed to doing what has proven to work. Why,  because much of the rest of the world already has it figured out and therefore the solution would not be an “American idea”? We need to get over the idea of shunning anything not invented here and simply go with what works. We need to be as much pragmatists as we at least used to be inventive.

We need to get over the idea that somehow anything socialist is un-American.  We presently allow our government to handle our healthcare needs for about half of us but going all the way seems to be a big problem. Perhaps the most socialist healthcare system in the world is from Britain and of course from the above graphic we learn that they also provide the best care by most standards.

A person working sixty hours a week at a minimum wage job will earn about $21,000.  But according to the above they would likely spend about half that amount just for their family’s health insurance! I know I seem to harp on this topic often and that is because it is an obvious solution that is for some reason vastly ignored by so many of us. We need to take a big bite out of the humility apple and learn what the rest of the world can teach us.




5 thoughts on “US continues its losing streak in health care quality comparison

  1. I’m from Australia, so forgive my ignorance, but I was under the impression that the USA was moving to a more socialist health care system now that Obama care was passed? Or is healthcare still not provided to everyone under this system?

    The system we have in Australia pretty basic, every one is charged around 2% of their income for public healthcare, and nothing if you opt for private health care. I’m actually surprised australia ranks so high tbh….


    1. Thanks for the comments about Australia. I would love to only have to pay 2% of my income for healthcare. I am on Medicare but still pay more than 10% of my income for healthcare. Yeah, Obamacare did decrease the number of uninsured from 18% of the population to 13% but that still leaves about 40 million without healthcare.

      Non-citizens (those classified at permanent residents, and undocumented) are not included above and have about 45% uninsured. We still have quite a ways to go but since our federal congress is in total gridlock right now that won’t likely happen soon.

      Obamacare did not do much to reign in healthcare costs. That was supposed to happen as the next step but then came the gridlock. So, even though more people are covered we still pay at least two times more for the same services that you and the rest of the world pay.


  2. That is crazy :O – no wonder it’s such a big deal over there. Still I have to question where all that money is actually going. Are doctors requesting test they simply don’t need for the sake for earning the extra revenue?


    1. Where is the money going? That question has many answers.

      –Many of the specialists get $40,000 or more per surgery and million dollar plus a year.

      –Even though one multimillion dollar piece of equipment would be needed in a community each hospital or doctors’ groups think they need one to be competitive.

      –Our medical establishment drown in paperwork and it seems no two medical records systems are the same.

      –The lawyers are always on the lookout for suing and then take a 50% cut on what they win. Therefore doctors order many tests that really aren’t necessary to cover their asses.

      — The biggest problem for me is totally inadequate regulation. No one is looking at the overall problem to find mandated solutions. Everyone seems to guard their own slice of the pie.

      The possibilities are endless on where to save money but no one seems to have the guts to tackle them. When we try to regulate healthcare to any degree the opponents scream “DEATH PANELS” are deciding who lives and who dies. Endless possibilities…..


  3. Doesn’t make much sense does it?
    I am for one payer system.
    I have lived that system for 35 years through the military. It works well. We get tests we need and nothing more. No going to PT for slight injuries. One ultrasound for a healthy pregnancy. They are big on preventative medicine- insisting on vaccines.
    Our doctors share machines (my mom’s has an MRI in his office!) We cannot sue, but can bring problems to the table and get settlements. Our doctors have deferment on their student loans- which are paid off after a certain number of years worked. Most of all- everyone from Private to General, spouses and children- is seen!

    One payer system is the only thing that will calm this down.


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