September 21, 2009 7:12pm CST
Here are some facts as stated in the September 21st issue of Forbes Magazine... a comparison of the Glogal Health Care systems... My question is: Do we are do we not need drastic changes in our health care system? Canada... A mix of private and public health care, with most of the populations enrolled in the public system, spends 10.1% of it's GDP on health care. United Kingdom... Provided mainly by a centralized public system (a.k.a. the Nathional Health Service); private insurance generally supplements this coverage, spends 8.4% of it's GDP on health care. Russia... A mix of private and public clinics (the latter offer free basic services and long waits). Limited number of free operations at research centers, spends 5% of it's GDP on health care. Japan... Coverage provided by public medical insurance programs, families pay 50% of the premiums; the rest is usually picked up by employers, it spends 7.9% of GDP on health care. China... Patchwork of very limited socialized insurance, paid for by employers, the state and individuals. Middle class often seeks added private coverage. Most people, including the rural poor, pay out-of-pocket. It spends 4.5% of GDP on health care. Germany... Residents must have healh insurance -- quasi-public and private providers, it spends 10.4% of it's GDP on health care. France... State-run health insurer provides care even to those who can't afford it, it spends 11% of it's GDP on health care. Italy... National health plan provides hospital and medical benefits, it spends 8.7% of it's GDP on health care. India... Public spending is miniscule, so most people rely on fee-for-service care, if at all. Insurers have made few inroads into the country. It spends 4.9% of it's GDP on health care. United States... Privately financed system: government-run Medicare and Medicaid Provide care for the elderly and poor, respectively. It spends 16% of it's GDP on health care. The article goes on to explain and compare health care systems in different countries, it seems that people in the United States get a lot less "bang for the buck" in comparison with other countries. One example is the German system as compared to the U.S. system: The article states that figures from 2007 show the following: Health care spending per capita... Germany - $3,588... U.S. - $7,290 Out-of-pocket health care spending per capita... Germany - $470... U.S. - $890 Per capita spending on health insurance... Germany - $191... U.S. - $516 Per capita spending on drugs... Germany - $542... U.S. - $878 Number of practicing doctors per 1,000 people... Germany - 3.5... U.S. - 2.4 Average number of doctor visits... Germany - 7.5... U.S. - 3.8 Average number of days stay for acute care... Germany - 7.8... U.S. - 5.5 Do we need some changes? It sure looks like it
• United States
22 Sep 09
It would be nice if you list your sources. Unfortunately, you are comparing apples to oranges. For example, you failed to mention the tax rate for Germany. It really is an expensive country to live in. Also, the U.S. really has a lot more people than Germany has. But the biggest problem between the two systems is that of the Government. Germany's government is centralized, whereas we not only have a Federal Government but State Governments as well. Apart from all that, I have found that every health care system, despite the country has inherent flaws built in the system. By the way, did you notice, the less centralized the health care system, the less it spends on GDP? If anything this is a very valid argument for getting rid of all Government health insurance plans.
• United States
22 Sep 09
Sorry sierras, I listed the source as the Forbes Magazine, september issue. They are the ones who did the comparison, not me. It's clear to see that you aren't in favor of any change other than eliminating all health care for seniors and disabled. I'm sorry to hear that from you.
• United States
22 Sep 09
You misunderstood me. I stated based on the information provided that you had a case for eliminating all government medical programs since the countries that spend the least percentage of their GDP on health care are the ones who do not have government plans. In fact, one of my biggest criticisms of the House health care and Senate plans is the potential cuts going to be made to Medicare. If they are going to clean up the corruption in the system, why haven't they started now? I also do not advocate a government health insurance option because I do not believe that it will solve the overall problems of health care. Nor do I believe it will reduce the percentage of the GDP. My objections are based on the fact that the numbers being presented simply do not add up. I think there are a very few simple changes that Congress and the President could pass right now without having taxpayers foot the bill. I also said that there are inherent problems in both types of systems, private or government run.