We Don't Need Healthcare Reform In America?

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  1. rhamson profile image72
    rhamsonposted 13 years ago

    These statistics come from 1991 but show a trend that needs looking at when we are fed the line about the best healthcare system in the world.


    Health Care Expenditures (percent of GDP) (1)

    United States   13.4%
    Canada          10.0
    Finland          9.1
    Sweden           8.6
    Germany          8.4
    Netherlands      8.4
    Norway           7.6
    Japan            6.8
    United Kingdom   6.6
    Denmark          6.5

    Doctors' incomes: (2)

    United States   $132,300
    Germany           91,244
    Denmark           50,585
    Finland           42,943
    Norway            35,356
    Sweden            25,768

    Percent of population covered by public health care:

    ALL NATIONS (except below)    100%
    France, Austria                99
    Switzerland, Spain, Belgium    98
    Germany                        92
    Netherlands                    77
    United States                  40

    Average paid maternity leave (as of 1991; this changed with Clinton's
    signing of the 1993 Family and Medical Leave Act):

    Sweden          32 weeks
    France          28
    United Kingdom  18
    Norway          18
    Denmark         18
    Japan           14
    Germany         14
    Netherlands     12
    United States    0

    Life Expectancy (years):

                    Men    Women
    Japan           76.2   82.5
    France          72.9   81.3
    Switzerland     74.1   81.3
    Netherlands     73.7   80.5
    Sweden          74.2   80.4
    Canada          73.4   80.3
    Norway          73.1   79.7
    Germany         72.6   79.2
    Finland         70.7   78.8
    United States   71.6   78.6
    United Kingdom  72.7   78.2
    Denmark         72.2   77.9

    Infant Mortality Rate (per 1,000 live births):

    United States   10.4
    United Kingdom   9.4
    Germany          8.5
    Denmark          8.1
    Canada           7.9
    Norway           7.9
    Netherlands      7.8
    Switzerland      6.8
    Finland          5.9
    Sweden           5.9
    Japan            5.0

    Death rate of 1-to-4 year olds (per community of 200,000 per year):

    United States   101.5
    Japan            92.2
    Norway           90.2
    Denmark          85.1
    France           84.9
    United Kingdom   82.2
    Canada           82.1
    Netherlands      80.3
    Germany          77.6
    Switzerland      72.5
    Sweden           64.7
    Finland          53.3

    Death rate of 15-to-24 year olds (per community of 200,000 per year):

    United States   203
    Switzerland     175
    Canada          161
    France          156
    Finland         154
    Norway          128
    Germany         122
    Denmark         120
    United Kingdom  114
    Sweden          109
    Japan            96
    Netherlands      90

    Note: the murder rate for the above age group is 48.8 per 200,000. Even
    subtracting this entirely still puts the U.S. near the top of the list.

    Premature Death (years of life lost before the age of 64 per 100 people):

    United States   5.8 years
    Denmark         4.9
    Finland         4.8
    Canada          4.5
    Germany         4.5
    United Kingdom  4.4
    Norway          4.3
    Switzerland     4.1
    Netherlands     4.0
    Sweden          3.8
    Japan           3.3

    Percent of people with normal body mass:

                    Men   Women
    Germany         53%   37
    Finland         51    37
    United Kingdom  46    38
    Canada          52    29
    Switzerland     49    30
    France          44    30
    Denmark         44    25
    United States   47    22
    Sweden          44    25

    Percent of people who believe their health care system needs fundamental change:

    United States   60%
    Sweden          58
    United Kingdom  52
    Japan           47
    Netherlands     46
    France          42
    Canada          38

  2. Oona Seckar profile image62
    Oona Seckarposted 13 years ago

    I'm mystified most by how right-wing politicians paid off by the pharma companies tell the U.S. public how people with universal health care hate it and envy the U.S.  If you criticise the NHS in the UK you might as well announce you kill puppies and assault senior citizens and the Queen on a regular basis.  People will hate and despise you.

    1. SparklingJewel profile image66
      SparklingJewelposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      I don't know I don't live there...but I have seen many people and documentaries on the health care systems around the world, and they are not perfect, people wait a long time and suffer, and there are many that come to the US for treatments...

      It is interesting that there are soooo many different views on the situation...humans...we are a varied people... smile

      1. Oona Seckar profile image62
        Oona Seckarposted 13 years agoin reply to this

        Oh my God, well that is so true.  The thing is there is no perfect system and never will be.  But given the choice, I could and would never move to the US or anywhere with a similar system, and healthcare is the #1 reason.

        I know I will never worry that if I get sick it will result in bankruptcy, or not go to the emergency room (we call it casualty) or my doctor because I can't afford it.  That's worth gold. (It's certainly worth taxes, especially when you consider the stats suggest uni health care actually costs less per person than the alternative.)

        1. AdsenseStrategies profile image62
          AdsenseStrategiesposted 13 years agoin reply to this

          I agree. It`s worth taxes, just like a lot of basic services (police, roadworks, food safety, general safety standards, fire services, postal services, schools). In Canada too, do away with health care and people would start burning down politicians` houses.

          However, having lived in the UK as well, in both countries there is still lots of criticism and dissatisfaction, that I have heard. But that does not mean either Canadians or Brits don`t want public health. I mean, people criticize the schools too (in Britain, less so in Canada) -- that does not mean they want them done away with!

          ... so you are both right, in a way

      2. AdsenseStrategies profile image62
        AdsenseStrategiesposted 13 years agoin reply to this

        I agree. I saw a great documentary on PBS last month -- they looked at five(?) systems, some in Asia, some in Europe (Japan, Taiwan, Britain, France, Germany, Switzerland, I think). They were all extremely different from each other -- I had no idea.

        It turns out that a lot of countries that have guaranteed standards, ie., government oversight, still run entirely private systems. In other words, the Canadian and British all-public models are not the norm at all. The difference between German or Japanese systems and the US system was that the companies cannot do whatever the hell they want -- because the government regulates the industry, keeping costs down, for example.

        This is analogous to the Canadian financial sector, which is also completely private, but is strictly monitored by the govt. The result was the Canadian banks were not allowed to get involved in high-risk ventures over the past decade, so none of them fell....

        As is so often the case, this is another vote for a robust, free-market capitalism that still has some govt oversight built in so that corporations do not drive the entire bus over a cliff.

    2. OregonWino profile image60
      OregonWinoposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      Yes, there needs to be health care reform.  There are many problems, but simply inflating the numb er of people who are crammed into an already overburdened and inefficient system does not really do anything but increase the cost.  What is being run through congress is public health care EXPANSION not reform....it does nothing to deal with the underlying issues of fraud, waste, duplication of efforts etc.

      1. AdsenseStrategies profile image62
        AdsenseStrategiesposted 13 years agoin reply to this

        Yes, and the last three nouns you use in your last sentence sum up the whole issue -- exactly; right on.

        1. OregonWino profile image60
          OregonWinoposted 13 years agoin reply to this

          Hehe...thank you!  Glad I got something right!

  3. SparklingJewel profile image66
    SparklingJewelposted 13 years ago

    thanks for the stats...how old are they?

    I think the main issue is with the economics and the greed of insurance companies and medical corporations, as well as government control

    if those stats are very recent, its obviously not because we have bad healthcare or the people are dieing right and left (no political pun intended smile  )

    the death rate of 1-4 year olds in the US is troublesome...did your sources define that?

  4. Oona Seckar profile image62
    Oona Seckarposted 13 years ago

    Check out #ilovethenhs on twitter.  It will tell you plenty about universal health care.

    1. SparklingJewel profile image66
      SparklingJewelposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      I don't twitter...suggest a website for me of information ?  smile

  5. TMMason profile image61
    TMMasonposted 13 years ago

    I agree.

    We need target specific reform.

    We do NOT need an entire over-haul and nationalization of our  health care system. As those idiots in congress and the white house are trying to do right now.

    1. AdsenseStrategies profile image62
      AdsenseStrategiesposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      Yes this sounds basically right -- usually large overhauls result in lots of mess, because they require a massive orientation of millions of people working in that system, and of the various sub-systems that make that system up.

      So, yes, targeted specific reform -- sounds like a motto for living, in fact! Good way to phrase the issue

  6. SparklingJewel profile image66
    SparklingJewelposted 13 years ago

    back to Constitutional living is the answer, then nobody is in anybody else's pocket to get what they want, and free market capitalism can thrive ethically.

    the problem now is that it is such a Gordian Knot...governments are corrupt and corporations have no ethical care for people that "turn their wheels"

    ramming through what congress has just done is not the answer

    1. maven101 profile image73
      maven101posted 13 years agoin reply to this

      Like the Gordian Knot, the solution requires cutting through all the bureaucratic layers that have worked like molasses to slow down services and increase costs...We do need health care reform, not a new, gigantic government bureaucracy that enriches unions, politicians, and insurance companies...Force congress to have the same health care package they are forcing upon the public and see how fast we get real reform...

      1. SparklingJewel profile image66
        SparklingJewelposted 13 years agoin reply to this

        So here is a possible answer to gradually getting back to Consitutional Law

        check out www.givemeliberty.org   they have just completed a Continental congress that met in the Chicago area last month. Reprpesentative from every state were there (elected by people that had heard what was going on, I voted smile )

        They decided to do a "redress of Grievances" as per the Constitution, They came up with a list of grievances that will be presented to the government after they get signatures from the people. the website is still in progress but you can find information and link to it through the above web address.

        these people are very organized and are all professional people that have been concerned for decades that the US was going down hill from lack of staying within Constitutional Law

    2. ncmonroe1981 profile image61
      ncmonroe1981posted 13 years agoin reply to this

      Hear Hear!!

      I don't know what has happened when people think that the best way to make an enormous, nation-changing decision is to ram it through law before people even really know what's going on or have a chance to actually THINK about what they ought to be doing. It's a mess.

  7. docrehab profile image60
    docrehabposted 13 years ago

    Death rate of 1-to-4 year olds (per community of 200,000 per year):

    United States   101.5

    yikes yikes yikes yikes

  8. aware profile image64
    awareposted 13 years ago

    we need non profit health care insurance company's .i have answeres

  9. SparklingJewel profile image66
    SparklingJewelposted 13 years ago

    a perspective on what is happening with healthcare

    http://video.foxnews.com/12792795/deadl … b0c12f2749

  10. Petra Vlah profile image60
    Petra Vlahposted 13 years ago

    America has a lot to be “proud” this Christmas Eve

    If the statistics are correct than….

    America is either LAST or at the very BOTTOM in following areas

    Health care coverage

    Life expectancy

    Normal body mass

    ZERO weeks Maternity leave

    In the other hand

    America is FIRST on ALL the following areas:

    Infant mortality

    Children death rate (1-4)

    Young adults (15-24)

    Premature death

    *** Anybody still believe we do not need reforms???!!!!!!

    1. TMMason profile image61
      TMMasonposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      I think we all agree we need reforms, but not over-hauls.

  11. Misha profile image62
    Mishaposted 13 years ago

    I don't think anybody seriously thinks we don't need reforms. The question remains - which exactly reforms? And this is where people divide. Merry Xmas smile

  12. Kidgas profile image60
    Kidgasposted 13 years ago

    I don't think the health care discussion can be simply distilled into a few stats suggesting that a particular system is better or worse than another.

    The child mortality figures of the OP suggest that American children die at twice the rate of Finnish children and the implication is due to the health care system. 

    First these numbers are somewhat different from the data provided by the World Health Organization as summarized below:

    Total Child Mortality per 1,000

    United States 1.3 (0.13%)
    Japan 1.2
    Norway 1.2
    Denmark 1.2
    France 1.0
    United Kingdom 0.9
    Canada 0.8
    Netherlands 1.0
    Germany 1.0
    Switzerland 0.9
    Sweden 0.8
    Finland 0.8 (0.08%)


    But is there even more to these facts?  First, let's look at the rate for multiple gestation births--

    Multiple gestation births

    United States 31.1 per 1000 live births (3.11%)
    Finland 15 per 1000 live births (1.5%) 
    sources: http://www.stakes.fi/EN/tilastot/statis … ummary.htm

    http://roomfordebate.blogs.nytimes.com/ … in-births/

    http://www.fertilityforumonline.com/new … .asp?ID=12

    Now the mortality rate for twins is 5X higher than for a single baby.  From the WHO data we see that the US mortality per 1,000 births is 1.3 while Finland's is 0.8.  But an extra 1.6% of the births have a 5X greater risk of death.  Is this enough to account for the difference in mortality?

    If we assume that for every 1000 multiple gestations in Finland the mortality would be 0.08% * 5 = 0.4%, then adding 16/1000 more births would add 0.4% * 1.6% or a total of 0.64 percent or 0.064 to the total mortality bringing Finland's mortality to 0.864 per 1000.

    There are also ethnic differences in infant mortality that should be considered when comparing disparate health care systems.  Here is just one example:

    To come out with a blanket statement about a system based upon a few numbers seems naive to me.  I think the situation is much more complex.

    What about the GDP figure?

    Half of the US expenditures are consumed by just 5% of the population.


    If we could start looking into and controlling these costs, the GDP figures could decline.  Administrative overhead in Canada is much less than the US which accounts for another $1000 per capita that could be reduced.

    The average medical insurance company has a profit margin of about 4% and a return on equity of about 10-12%.  Of course, we all know that every middle man in a transaction gets a cut.

    There are certainly areas that can be altered to improve the system.  Of course, I do think everyone should have some basic level of coverage and that it is a travesty a nation as rich as ours can't provide that to our citizens like we do with public education through high school.

    But, I also think that some level of personal responsibility is needed.  Rates of obesity in the US are double that of Canada--

    http://www.obesityrates.net/obesity-rat … y-country/

    which automatically leads to higher health care costs and lower life expectancy.  I think the quality of the medical care is as good as other countries.  I think the population leaves much to be desired.

    We need health care reform to cover those without coverage, but we also need lifestyle reform to lower costs.

  13. brimancandy profile image79
    brimancandyposted 13 years ago

    I think we do need healthcare reform, but, banking on insurance companies to play nice with new health insurance laws will be the same mess we are currently in with credit card companies.

    The rules of this new reform will not be fully functional for a few years down the road, allowing insurance companies to do whatever they want in until that deadline. Which will probably mean higher premiums, and more people losing their insurance because they can no longer afford it.

    I don't know all the laws, because the public has not seen what is in it. Only a bunch of bickering. However, I hope that there is a low cap on what these companies can charge for their service. Without a cap, they will charge whatever they want, and without the public option, there will be no compitition.

    One of the reasons we have become slaves to big Oil, because there is no real competition. And, once the smaller insurance companies go under, the big boys will raise their rates so
    high nobody can afford it.

    Making it manditory, with fines, is a bunch of bullshit. The only thing that will do is put more money into insurance companies, while the care doesn't change. The same as for mandatory auto insurance.

    I pay $125.00 a month, and have had only 1 minor accident in 17 years. That is one hell of a lot of money to one insurance company, add the thousands of other clients. They are making Billions.

    Don't let political groups fool you, when they tell
    you these businesses are losing money. It's all a big smoke screen to get more of your tax dollars. That's why they are fighting this bill. They want to keep getting it.

  14. profile image58
    logic,commonsenseposted 13 years ago

    Health care reform may be a good idea, but having politicians control it will be disastrous!

  15. donotfear profile image84
    donotfearposted 13 years ago

    I don't know all the arguments, politics & issues involved surrounding this Health care reform stuff. All I know is this hard, cold, true fact: I DON'T WANT THE GOVERNMENT controlling my health care decisions or treatment my doctor & I decide on.

  16. Uninvited Writer profile image81
    Uninvited Writerposted 13 years ago

    So, you'd rather have insurance companies deciding on it?
    From all I've heard, I doubt the government will tell you what sort of health care you need.

  17. rhamson profile image72
    rhamsonposted 13 years ago

    A peculiar thing has transpired with the Democratic party winning the government is that it seems to be the party of Yes and the Republicans have become the party of No.

    The Republicans are going to have to sell the same people a better message if they wish to win over the change they are predicting in 2010 and 2012.

    The people they have to win over are going to want to hear more than no from a bunch of politicians who have constantly proven they can't be trusted and start showing some initiative as to how we can come to some compromises.


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