Tuesday, January 09, 2007


Health Care: Progress, but ever so... s l o w

Slowly, slowly, the movement for universal health care is advancing. “Creeping” seems to be a better verb, but at least it’s on the move.

Our health care is like an elephant described and designed by who don’t know each other, don’t talk to each other, and are in different parts of the building. Luxembourg is the 2nd highest-spending on health care nation in the world; we outspend them by 24%. We die younger, more of our children die than in other industrial nations, and yet we pay more.
And 47,000,000 of us have no health insurance.

This is insane. The war is insane. The President is insane. What the hell has happened to this country?

From: Progress Report 1/5/07

HEALTH CARE -- PAYING MORE, GETTING LESS: The U.S. health care system is in shambles. Health care costs are increasing faster than wages and nearly 47 million Americans -- 8 million of whom are children -- are uninsured. Millions more are underinsured. Yet the United States continues to spend more on health care per person than any other country, including countries that provide health care coverage to its entire citizenry. According to a new report by the Kaiser Family Foundation, in 2003 alone, health spending per person was at least 24 percent higher than that of Luxembourg (the second highest spending country) and over 90 percent higher than countries considered global competitors. But unfortunately, our health care system spending is not buying us superior health. Americans, on average, die at a younger age compared to the average age of death of comparable nations and the U.S. infant mortality rate is 6.9 deaths per 1,000 live births, while Japan and Sweden have rates below 3.5 deaths per 1,000 live births. Additionally, U.S. health care resources continue to lag. About 70 percent of deaths and health costs in the U.S. are attributable to chronic disease, which are largely preventable. Yet, only half of recommended preventive services are provided to adults.

The United States also has fewer practicing physicians and nurses per 1,000 people than comparable countries. The Center for American Progress has a plan to provide every American affordable health care that emphasizes prevention, while controlling costs and maintaining individuals' choice of doctors and plans.

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