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10 Facts About American Health Care: What do YOU think?

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by Bigfoot3814, Mar 26, 2009.

  1. Bigfoot3814

    Bigfoot3814 Deity

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    First I just want to say that I honestly don't know very much about the healthcare systems of the United States or other countries, certainly not enough to say one is better than or worse than another, and that I'm not posting this with the intention of saying, "hey look, X group of people are wrong and Y group of people are right". That's not it. I'm posting this because I would really like to hear what you guys have to say in response to it.

    Second, I'm aware that the National Center for Policy Analysis is a right wing think tank, and that the way some of these findings are presented is very leading. But here we go.

    Fact #7 took me by surprise. European, Canadian, and Australian posters on CFC have definitely expressed approval of their health care systems, and I thought for the most part these people were satisfied with them.

    Then again, the NCPA is probably interpreting "fundamental change" and "complete rebuilding" to mean less government involvement, and for all I know it could mean they want more government involvement.
    I bolded that because the distinction is important to make.

    So, what do you make of this? I would especially like to hear from people who are from or who have lived under the systems of Canada, Europe, etc.
     
  2. Earthling

    Earthling Deity

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    Some of these are complete baloney - this list is certainly biased in line with US#1. For instance,

    Fact 4: 96% percent of Americans versus "less than 90% of Canadians"...:lol: When you realize not everybody is sick or at risk I wouldn't call this significant at all. I bet we're proud to have more colonoscopy's though.

    Fact 5: Looking at just "self-reports?" Not a very objective way to measure data - and there's already a lot of bias because people from different countries most certainly do self-report things differently. A lot of these other facts are also just survey opinions, and people can be very fickle as on any political issue.

    The one underlying theme which this report does reflect is something that most people know - the US does have top-quality healthcare and technology even including a variety of elective and cosmetic procedures, for those who can afford it. And of course we're generally a well-off nation where people can see doctors/get routine screenings and stuff but I don't see huge differences here compared to, say, Europe. But we spend a ridiculous amount, even more so the older a person gets, and a lot of health care is still inaccessible to those who can't afford it.
     
  3. Bigfoot3814

    Bigfoot3814 Deity

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    I assumed that since they were talking about preventive treatment you would have that sort of thing done before you were sick or at risk, but I don't know if that's how it's done.
     
  4. Bamspeedy

    Bamspeedy CheeseBob

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    Stats are fun, people can pick and choose certain stats to say whatever they want. The US is better in some stats and worse in other stats. The anti-US system crowd will pick the stats that support their case while the pro-US system crowd can pick the stats that support their case.

    The anti-US system crowd would argue that since the US is the 'richest' country we should be #1 in every stat, while hailing useless stats such as doctors per capita (Cuba) and the number of hospital beds per capita (regardless of how efficiently those beds are being used and I've heard rumors that some hospitals in the UK merely took the wheels off of gurnees so they would technically count as a 'bed' to meet new requirements placed on the hospital).

    That said, the US system isn't as bad as some people make it sound like, but it does have excessive/wasteful spending in some areas. My hospital has valet parking (I'm not just talking about if you drive your car up to the emergency room, I'm saying if you go to the clinic or go to visit patients you can utilize the free valet parking). And many hospitals are like luxury hotel rooms compared to hospitals in most other countries. These things are a luxury, and not really needed and drives up the cost of healthcare.
     
  5. devilhunterred

    devilhunterred Prince

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    A nation's health care is only as good as its distribution is fair and appropriate to those in need. Having the latest gadgets and gizmos are nice, but if the majority of the population do not have access to them, they are essentially useless on the general level.
     
  6. Kerozine

    Kerozine Deity

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    I highly doubt any of these countries would even consider a US-style health care system as an alternative to what they currently have..
     
  7. Cutlass

    Cutlass The Man Who Wasn't There.

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    Sometimes you can tell where someone will stand by knowing where they sit....



    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Center_for_Policy_Analysis
     
  8. Bigfoot3814

    Bigfoot3814 Deity

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    I figured. So what do you think they're hoping for? A fundamental change sounds like something big.
    I kind of already addressed that...

    I think Bamspeedy may have hit it right on the head.
     
  9. Mark1031

    Mark1031 Deity

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    The US system is an unsustainable disaster. First off let’s separate medical research from care. Yes US is #1. You know why? Government bureaucrats ie. the NIH funding of basic medical research and the university research system.

    Now as for care. First off the profit motive leads to expensive and wasteful procedures.

    Guess what. Study shows it is useless test and leads to expensive intervention.

    We spend 3 billion/yr on an Alzheimer’s drug that does absolutely nothing because the drug companies pushed the approval and it makes people feel better to give them unfounded hope in pill form.

    I could go on. Meantime we have high infant mortality because poor people can’t get basic preventive care. It is both a moral and economic nightmare.

    In the end we live less long than other countries while flushing an unsustainable 100s of billions down the toilet each year. And even when you have good health insurance every time you use it there is a flurry of bills and non payments and supplemental payments that you need to hire an accountant to figure out.
     
  10. Kerozine

    Kerozine Deity

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    Expanded services? Reduced wait times? Private clinic alternatives? A statute requiring doctors to kiss their booboos? :dunno:

    The article does not state for what reasons citizens are dissatisfied with their health care system, so much so that they would clamor for 'fundamental change'.
     
  11. Labtec600

    Labtec600 Emperor

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    And then just like everything else in this thread, I heard our rate is higher because we count every birth "a live birth" if there are any signs of life, while some reporting countries consider it to be stillborn.....

    Yes, statisics are fun.
     
  12. Mark1031

    Mark1031 Deity

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    And watch the coming avalanche of lies in the brawl over US healthcare. There are 2 very important components of the Obama plan. 1) a government based plan that people can buy into as an alternative to private insurance- this should be great right-competition- given the inefficient government no one will buy in and you have nothing to worry about right. Wrong, you have to worry that the government program will crush profit driven private insurance and drive the cost down for everyone (as well as the profit for a few). 2) A board to look at the cost effectiveness of procedures. Who could argue with this? The procedure providers that’s who. Oh you will come between the Dr. and the patient we are told. Well frankly if the Dr. is giving me procedures and treatments that don’t work they are frauds and should not be paid for that. Do you want to pay for the laying on of hands too? We idolize Drs. but you would be shocked by the number of things for which there is no evidence of benefit or actual evidence of harm that are done routinely throughout the US medical system.
     
  13. Mark1031

    Mark1031 Deity

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    I've heard a lot of things. link please.
     
  14. Bigfoot3814

    Bigfoot3814 Deity

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    :lol: :goodjob:
    That I would be very interested to hear.
     
  15. Onionsoilder

    Onionsoilder Reaver

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    Here's some more facts:

    1: Americans pay approximately 250% more for prescription drugs then in other countries.

    2: For every dollar spent on health care in America, approximately 25 cents goes to administrative expenses. For every dollar spend on health care in most other developed countries, approximately 5 cents go to administrative costs.

    3: Approximately 18,000 Americans die each year from causes that could have been prevented if they had health insurance. The amount that die in other countries? 0.
     
  16. Cutlass

    Cutlass The Man Who Wasn't There.

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  17. uppi

    uppi Deity

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    Even more interesting is that the US government spends more per person than any other of these governments, even more than those with fully nationalized healthcare.

    In terms of healthcare spending the US is the most socialist country. It just seems that the implementation sucks.
     
  18. Formaldehyde

    Formaldehyde Both Fair And Balanced

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    http://www.ncpa.org/about/

    In other words, they are a special interest group paid for by medical and insurance companies, neocons, and other assorted right-wingers to propagandize their own agenda. You might as well save yourself some time and tune your TV to Fox News to get your facts.

    Is the best medical care in the world availiable only in the US. Absolutely yes, as long as you have the money and the clout to secure it. That's why all the 'celebrities' come here from around the world when they get seriously ill. They can literally buy the time of the doctor who discovered the procedure they need, and who is the indisputed best authority in the field. That doctor practices here because he is a capitalist and he can make far more here than anyplace else in the world.

    Is that what you get with your typical HMO? Absolutely not. Claim denied.

    I bet you didn't know a liver transplant was considered to be elective surgery in many cases. I know a thirtysomething guy who finally got enough donations to pay for his. He had to come up with something like $40K out of his own pocket to pay the difference between the actual cost and what his policy would pay as he slowly died...
     
  19. Bill3000

    Bill3000 OOOH NOOOOOOO! Supporter

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    As much as I'd like to pounce a right-wing think tank, wouldn't it be more productive to debunk or discredit the OP instead of the ad hominems?
     
  20. Mark1031

    Mark1031 Deity

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    That is relatively easy. In each of the countries mentioned people live longer overall while spending less money. Boom- Done. It is pertty clear from points 1 and 2 that they are cherry picking specific cancers from specific countries. Prostate cancer in Norway:lol:? OK how about lymphoma in Lichtenstein? Why are the cancer rates different? Is it diet, cultural (I don't really care for the butt exam myself), genetic or bad medical care? Who knows? The rest is also irrelevant. Who cares how many MRIs we have. Are they needed or a waste of money? Same with the tests and even the statins. Does everyone need to be taking lipitor? Where is the study to support this? The other issue is wait times. Well in an efficient system there should be some wait for non urgent care if the system is being used to capacity. Is it a pain. Sure. Is it worth an extra 5% of GDP to wait 4-weeks less for an elective procedure? I would say no.
     

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