Health Care U.S. – Can’t We Learn from the World?

Here in the United States, in regards to Health Care, we seem to have blinders on. There is a mindset here in too many of our people that refuses to believe we can be anything but number one, no matter what the facts and statistics show.

Our healthcare, if you can pay, is good; but the way we deliver and make that care available to our citizens is a disgrace for a country with the wealth we have.

All you have to do is look – and I mean really look – at other countries and what they are doing. Yes, they have problems, but they also have the will to care for the health of their people, and right now they are doing a much, much better job that we are, and, at the same time, spending much less to get the job done.

I was watching PBS last night – “Front Line” – and I wanted to share with you a wonderful program. Please click through “Sick Around the World” and watch this hour long program, and then please share it with others. It is a picture of how 5 other capitalist societies – the United Kingdom, Japan, Germany, Taiwan and Switzerland – deliver health care, and what the United States could learn from their successes and failures. The show highlights trips to these countries by Washington Post foreign correspondent
T. R. Reid.


Here’s another experience of someone who has experienced the health care system of our country, and then was exposed to health delivery in another country – this time France.

For a basic primer on the issues, see our video on health care.

Health Care in England – An Experience

Right now, there is a great deal of confusion blowing rampant through the halls of the media about health care reform.

One of the remarkable things that emerges from all of these so-called national discussions is a mind-set in many Americans that absolutely refuses to look at the facts about our own health care system and the health care systems of other countries.

The World Health Organization ranks our overall health care system 37th in the world.  There are many other statistics that show that we here in America are spending a lot more for our healthcare and receiving in return a lot less that other countries.

We are bombarded with bugaboo words like socialism, communism, government control over our lives, death-panels, that continue to distract us from an objective look at the facts and the truth of the matter.

We are a rich country economically compared to many countries, and yet we have 47 million people in this country with no health insurance whatsoever.  This is a disgrace that is allowed in no other advanced nation in the world.

But in America we turn our backs on other countries’ experience, we refuse to open our minds to facts, we paint false pictures of the health systems of other countries.  If we were truly wise, we would sift through the experiences of these countries and then model a system of our own, using the best of each system.

Thirty percent of our health care monies are simply swallowed up in insurance companies’s marketing, advertising, and paperwork costs, along with enormous bonuses and profits in an industry that should never allow profit to be the main incentive in the first place.

There is much more.  For a basic primer on the issues, see our video on health care.

And here is a commentary from a woman who has lived and experienced health care in both America and England.

Health Care Reform: Facts and Fabrications

The health care debate is firing up now, and all kinds of misinformation is being thrown at the public.  People are confused, and rightly so.

Bob Lebow, a former past president of the 15,000 member Physicians for a National Health Program, and author of Health Care Meltdown, once wrote:

“I’ve found that one of the greatest obstacles to meaningful health care reform is the degree to which we Americans are clueless about our health care system.”

Two years ago, I traveled around Oregon interviewing doctors and people working for health care reform, to try and get at the basic issues of the problem.  It was an eye-opener for me.  I learned a lot.  I put together a 30-minute video and sent DVDs all over the country to different groups – part of America’s Dialogue II, the second in a series of national grassroots discussions.

The video was posted to YouTube, and I offer it to anyone below.  The issues are still the same today as two years ago.