Facts About Those Single-Payer Health Care Systems Desired by Many

Posted on June 2nd, 2009 by admin in Political Economy

The Canadian and UK systems are “single-payer” (Government run), and there are many folks here in USA who for reasons way beyond our pay grade seem to think single-payer would improve their medical prospects and lower their costs. So the question we ask is: Why do they believe that?

Naturally, the first thing a rational approach requires of us  is get some facts about the proposed systems and consider the implications, then revise beliefs.

We have found an excellent summary of comparative performance statistics for US, Canadian and British health care systems. When you read the following data, ask yourself this question:

Where would I prefer to be really sick?

Source: The Gartman Letter, May 2009

“Canada is a wonderful place to have a nasty gash on one’s forehead stitched, or to break one’s nose in a game of pick-up baseball; but have cancer, or need eye surgery, or want an MRI, and the business of medicine in Canada and/or the UK breaks down badly in favour of medical care here in the US. For example… and we wish to thank The Investor’s Business Daily for the data noted here this morning…

“… here in the US men and women survived cancer at an average of just a bit better than 65%. In England only 46% survive. In the US, 93% of those diagnosed with diabetes receive treatment within six months; in Canada only 43% do, and in the UK only 15% do! For those seniors needing a hip replacement and getting one within six months, 15% get it done in the UK; 43% get it done in Canada … and in the US 90% do! For those waiting to see a medical specialist, 23% of those in the US get in within four weeks, while 57% in Canada have not yet done so, and in the UK 60% are still waiting after four weeks.

“When it comes to proper medical equipment, in the US there are 71 MRI or CT scanners available per million people. In Canada there are but 18, and in the UK there are only 14! Ah, but the best figure of all is this: 11.7% of those ‘seniors’ in the US with ‘low incomes’ say they are in excellent health, which in and of itself sounds rather low … rather disconcerting … and an indictment of the system itself, doesn’t it? But in Canada only 5.8% do!

“Yessiree bob, ya’ jus’ gotta’ luv that collectivized, socialized medical care! Let’s all go break a collective arm and enjoy the benefits of socialized medicine in the Commonwealth! (Canada) … but heaven help you if you’ve got something really, really wrong. If that’s the case, you’ll be running south to the border faster than you can reach a specialist anywhere in Canada; of that we are certain.”

We believe those socialist systems get exactly the results one should expect from the government–those same folks who in USA bring us Medicare and the Postal Service.

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