Charting America’s health care conundrum

  • Article by: Ray Grumney
  • Updated: March 2, 2010 - 12:07 PM

The United States spends far more on health care than any other advanced country, yet Americans’ health is mediocre.

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reasonable2Feb. 27, 10 6:53 PM

Japanese see a doctor 7 times a year and us 4.

Diabetes is an epidemic all over the word.

We spend like drunken sailors.

Japanese life expectancy is near the top but costs are less than those with much worse outcomes.

Is it the whale meat?

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ffedericoFeb. 27, 10 7:12 PM

these two facts will still remain. Our health won't improve and health care spending will increase.

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danoveFeb. 27, 10 9:10 PM

these two facts will still remain: our health won't improve and health care spending will increase.

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danoveFeb. 27, 10 9:13 PM

these two facts will still remain: our health won't improve and health care spending will increase.

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concernedduhFeb. 28, 10 2:24 AM

So we don't exercise or eat right, we spend more on drugs, so we get fat and get diabetes. How is the government going to fix any of these problems? Americans need to take responsibility for their health and not think that doctors, insurance companies or the government can fix basic cultural problems we have developed within our society.

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jackstpaul2Feb. 28, 10 3:18 AM

Nope. What health reform? The answers are in the details, of which you provide none for your "analysis." To the exent that more people will have reliable access to medical care as a result of reform--with universal care the highest end obviously, overall health will improve because those "more" people will be healthier, on avg., overall than currently. Ergo, health in the US will improve. This is a no-brainer, unless you don't believe there's a causal relationship between receiving medical care and one's health. Depending what reforms are instituted, the increased medical spending=increased health effect could extend far beyond those currenty lacking "coverage." As far as cost increasing, there you go again sans details. It IS possible to expand coverage in the US and still cut costs.It's called single-payer and it has been PROVEN to work [for many decades] over and over in MULTIPLE nations, including the US (VA and Medicare are single-payer systems). I'm sure there are other ways to have a less costly health system than the US has without single-payer; Switzerland and The Netherlands have universal w/out single-payer at cheaper than US cost.

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hockeydadmnFeb. 28, 10 5:05 AM

Look at the chart, the problem is costs. The reason our costs are so high is that we have the nicest hospitals and equipment in the world. A healthy person doesn't need to go to the doctor 4 times a year. Most Americans seek treatment more than they need to, because it is being paid for by their insurance. If everyone had a $25 co-pay, our health care costs would drop. The one person in the White House that has health care right is Michelle Obama and her campaign against childhood obesity. We are not becoming a healthier nation and it is not due to our health care system, it's because of our lifestyles. Our life expectancy is also skewed by auto fatalities and homicides which are statics that the US leads leads the world in. Socialism is not the answer and never will be. Personal responsibility and cost cutting measures are the answer.

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humphydumphyFeb. 28, 10 7:42 AM

Can not give up on a losing idea. As one of the Representatives plainly told him Thursday - Americans do not want their healthcare nationalized. Good thing is - without the teleprompter - he came across the petulant egotist he really is. Health Care Nationalization is over already!

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uparentFeb. 28, 10 8:54 AM

Ask anyone recently out of the Military. MHS care is terrific and eons ahead of civilian health care in all ways. These people, newly introduced to the terrors of a free-market health care system see it for what it is. Inefficient, insufficient, ineffective, expensive and outdated. While numbers aren't directly comparable, MHS health care costs are around 1/2-3/4 those of civilian per person. Care is very good - from strapping together massive battle wounds and dealing with missing limbs to caring for pregnant women and soldiers children. So for the snaggle-toothed that lack the ability to read charts, study subjects, develop logic rather than rhetorical solutions, who wave their civilian weapons in the air screaming We Want Our FREEEEDOMS. Tell me. Why can socialized, government-run US military health care be so effective?

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hswcbFeb. 28, 10 9:16 AM

Let docs be private like most are now. Make hospitals all be non-profit and put them on a budget instead of itemized bills. Create one payer instead of hundreds. Outlaw for profit health insurance as the primary method of funding our health care. This country's way of how insurance companies control health care is unique and costly and forces rationing of care which then drives our terrible health care outcome results. Get rid of the middle man -- those greedy insurance companies. Let them insure life, cars and fire -- not my health care access.

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