dog and pony show
Behold the Best Health Care in the World
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  • Andrew Allison

    A post intended solely to obfuscate its opening sentence. With all it’s well-publicised problems, the NHS like most other “single-payer” systems (at least some of which are single-insurer) are far superior to the US system in terms of overall outcomes. A more useful topic might be the merits of single-payer insurance (I trust that it’s not necessary to point out how very well private health insurance companies are doing at the expense of the taxpayer). Closer to home, the VA scandal demonstrates the problem of single-payer healthcare, for example, Medicare demonstrates the benefits of single-payer insurance.

    • PKCasimir

      Try reading the British newspapers and the horror stories reported about the NHS on an almost daily basis and you will quickly change your mind. More pertinent is the fact that the Commonwealth Fund has an agenda in releasing this report with its pre-determined outcome. It wants the US to adopt the British system. One thing you don’t see with the NHS, is people with money choosing to have advanced medical procedures performed in the UK. They overwhelmingly choose the US. Why? Because of all of its faults, US medical care is the best in the world.

      • Andrew Allison

        If you take the time to actually read my comment you will see that I did not recommend the NHS — as the VA and the NHS demonstrate, single-provider health care can be a bad thing. I simply pointed out that with all its problems it produces better outcomes for the population as a whole (as opposed to the wealthy). The US system may serve the wealthy better (although the evidence is anecdotal) but for the rest of us it is not just hugely more costly but, as I wrote, produces inferior outcomes (see my reply to RonRonDeRon below for the sordid details).

        • DiogenesDespairs

          Do this Google search: UK hospital abuse.

          Guess which system you would rather be treated under. Remember, in the US, you can turn to the government’s courts to sue a culpable hospital. In UK, the hospital IS the government. Good luck with that.

          • Andrew Allison

            This is a recording: If you take the time to actually read my comment you will see that I did not recommend the NHS — as the VA and the NHS demonstrate, single-provider health care can be a bad thing. I simply pointed out that with all its problems it produces better outcomes for the population as a whole (as opposed to the wealthy).

    • RonRonDoRon

      “far superior to the US system in terms of overall outcomes”

      Please define “overall outcomes.”

    • Ann_NY

      When you talk to the many people I know who have horror stories of the care their parents have endured (long waits for surgery etc.,) you might think different. Also I would like to see the data on the outcomes as I’ve read that cancer survival rates in the US are far higher.

      Yes they’ve made it so you only have to wait two weeks to see the doctor but you’re only allowed an 8 minute visit. That’s barely enough time to get your blood pressure taken.

      • Andrew Allison

        This is a recording: If you take the time to actually read my comment you will see that I did not recommend the NHS — as the VA and the NHS demonstrate, single-provider health care can be a bad thing. I simply pointed out that with all its problems it produces better outcomes for the population as a whole (as opposed to the wealthy). Here’s the data you asked for: http://www.oecd.org/els/health-systems/Health-at-a-Glance-2013.pdf (charts start on p.24).

  • FriendlyGoat

    The fact of the matter is that the economic value of many people’s individual lives does not even come close to approaching the amounts which might be spent to treat their illnesses. Soooo, citizens in societies with very many of those people can either band themselves together to create laws surrounding the allocation of health care, or they can decide to let large numbers either die early or go bankrupt and stiff the (medical provider) creditors.

    When rich conservatives speak of what is “not sustainable”, they are really speaking of whether they think we are spending too much on people of low economic value. It’s always best to clarify that as soon as possible so the ensuing debate is not “fuzzy”.

  • Breif2

    The Guardian duly relayed the good news, noting in all sincerity that “the only serious black mark against the NHS was its poor record on keeping people alive.”

    “Ah, I see, I hadn’t correctly divined your attitude towards your patients.”

    A Hospital, Not an Abattoir

  • Jacksonian_Libertarian

    Without the “Feedback of Competition” forcing continuous improvements in Quality, Service, and Price as happens in a free market, I seriously doubt that the socialized medical system in the UK is the best healthcare in the world. What you aren’t seeing and isn’t being reported is the poor quality, neglect, and expense of delivering a VA level of healthcare with all that implies.

  • Ann_NY

    I live in the UK now. Thank god there is private insurance and private hospitals! The NHS ones are truly awful – dirty, crowded, and filled with disinterested employees. There are few Americans who would be happy with the quality of the care or facilities here.

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