"The most significant threat to our national security is our debt," Admiral Michael Mullen, Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff, August 27,2010


Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Debate Prep - Health Care Costs in the "Land of the Free"

Here is a comparison of health spending per capita in 15 developed countries:

Source:  OECD Health Data

Life expectancy in the U.S.A. is slightly over 78 years.  In every one of the other 14 countries listed above, life expectancy is at or greater than 80 years – in many it is over 81 years of age.  Conclusion – spending double and triple on health care, per capita, may be good for the health care industry – its employees and businesses – doctors, pharmaceutical and equipment manufacturers, insurance companies, hospitals and nurses, but it is neither cost effective nor needed nor productive.

Was it always this way?  Here is a look back some years at the growth of health care costs:



There was a time, in the 1970’s, when the U.S.A. was in the ballpark – spending $356 per capita compared with $225 average; about $130 per person more.  Currently, it spends $7,538 compared with $3,944 average –
That’s $3,594 more per person per year and yet our life expectancy is less than every other country in this survey!  
 
If you take a second look at these charts, the country that spends the least per capita is Japan - $2,729 per person.  They have the highest life expectancy of all – almost 84 years of age!  Almost supports the conclusion that the more a country spends on its health care bureaucracy, the sooner its citizens die.

The next time you see TV advertisements for drug products or listen to some chatty Cathy on a Hollywood media broadcast yap about “health breakthroughs” or some politician talk about taking care of grandma, ask them how much it will cost and how much the life expectancy will increase – no, not some vague answer – you now have the statistics – make them tell you the specific result it will have on these cost and life expectancy numbers.  Make them prove it.  Hold them accountable for their answer.  Even better – let them spend their own money; not taxpayers.

The US congress; the US president and Ben Bernanke keep this bubble alive – a total of 537 men and women.  It’s that simple if you wish to correct the situation.  Don't expect any assistance from public employee unions!

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