Shame, Shame – U.S. Comes Last in Healthcare

What’s wrong with America?

In the supposedly richest country in the world, 47 million Americans are uninsured and have no access to even basic healthcare. Even those with health insurance are routinely denied treatment by greedy insurance companies.

Now comes more disturbing news.

The U.S. has been ranked last in providing effective healthcare to its citizens, according to a new study of 19 industrialized countries by Commonwealth Fund.

In a study of amenable mortality (i.e. potentially preventable deaths from certain causes before the age of 75 with timely and effective healthcare) published in the Jan/Feb issue of Health Affairs, the authors estimate that 75,000-101,000 deaths could have been averted each year in the U.S. if it had achieved the average of all countries analyzed (except U.S.) or the average of three top-performing countries.

The study included a total of 19 countries. Besides U.S., the survey included 14 Western European nations, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and Japan. The study was conducted between 1997-98 and 2002-03.

Amenable mortality fell on average by 16% between 1997-98 and 2002-03 in all countries except the U.S., where the decline was a mere 4%.

In 1997-98, U.S. ranked 15th with an amenable mortality rate of 114.7 deaths per 100,000 people. However, by 2002-03 U.S. moved to the last place with 109.7 deaths per 100,000 people.

France had the best performance with amenable mortality rate of 64.8 per 100,000 people followed by Japan with 71.2 and Australia with 71.3.

Corporate greed is the cancer gnawing at the vitals of America.

Will things change?

No way. 

After all, the entrenched and deep-pocketed health care industry comprised of heartless insurance companies, contemptible pharmaceutical firms and greedy doctors, and their crooked political allies in Congress have a vested interest in things remaining the same.

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