Health Care Costs of Five Capitalist Democracies

Read it and weep Americans (read all of it, damn it). As with any system, there are pros and cons, but the British public health care system blows the American one out of the water. We pay less (both individually and as a percentage of GDP) and we get better outcomes.

If you do more research, you'll find out the Brits live longer, have better infant mortality rates and are generally healthier than Americans. At a fraction of the cost. I guess Americans are just too incompetent to figure out what the rest of the major industrialized nations have made work. Hell, the US has the highest infant mortality rate of any major industrialized nation. Latvia and Guyana are beating the US in infant mortality rates! Is it OK to let children *die* because your values reject people helping one another via the government?
  • Current Mood: disappointed disappointed
Crumbs! If the abysmal shambles that passes for a health system in the UK beats the American one, I really don't want to get ill in America...
I tried to point those stats out to a fervant beliver in completely private healthcare from the US and his retort was:
1) They're made up (sure they are!)
2) What would I know, being a Brit (hmm, clearly the 6+years living in the US trying to work my way through the freakishly complicated system doesn't count)
3) It would cost more (no, see stats provided)

Then he brought back argument 1)

I ended up deciding in the immortal words of someone much more wise than me.... "There are none so blind as those who will not see"
And another thing....
Sorry, I also gave him the scenario that we found ourselves in when we had to go back to the UK when tigerbeard was laid off this <....> close to us moving into Stage 2 of the Green Card process, and my visa was expiring 6 months later. We arrived back to the UK, and we all got a variety of sicknesses, plus tigerbeard's ongoing stomach issues. As we were not working for the first 2 months:
Cost of visits to the GP: GBP 0 (damn this keyboard that doesn't have a pound sign!)
Cost of visit to Nurse for 2 year assessment: GBP 0
Cost of prescriptions: GBP 0
Value of healthcare: Priceless (sorry, couldn't resist that)

Had we the situation been reversed and we were US citizens returning to the US, out of work, we may have been subsidised for our son's visits, we certainly would have been several hundred if not a thousand dollars out of pocket for the cost of medicines & GP visits.

Finally, I still shudder when I think of the issues we had trying to persuade the insurance company that we should not have to pay for a second epidural because the first one fell out. Apparently it was my fault, not the Dr's who put the first one in and then had to redo his handywork, but mine...

I miss my friends, I miss the Bay Area, I do not miss the health system (to call it "care" really would be an oxymoron.