health care

Publié par happy-diet mardi 18 mai 2010

Throughout much of the world, health care systems are dynamic and flexible, responding to needs and changes as they arise. However, the United States health care system has been stuck in its present state for much of its history. Amongst the nations who are successfully making changes to their healthcare programs are Canada, the Netherlands, Australia, England, Germany, France, Sweden, Norway, New Zealand, Switzerland and Sweden. The largely quantifiable changes they are making range from the system of reimbursement for providers to the actual delivery of medical attention. Efficiency and quality are markedly improved in many cases.

One of the biggest indicators of the problems with American health care, especially when compared with other countries, is that it performs the worst of 19 countries in terms of preventing medically avoidable deaths. In fact, over a 5 year period all the 19 countries studied improved their results in this category significantly, with the exception of the U.S. which made only a 4% improvement.

Cost of Healthcare in America

Many aspects of the American health care system itself and even the American system of government are at fault for the lack of change for the better to this system that is not performing as it should. Some of the things that need to change in order to create a better system include the following.

  1. The healthcare system needs to be simplified. In most other countries, systems are more streamlined and simple, especially when compared to the multi-faceted American system which has a multitude of payment points.
  2. Universal healthcare needs to be adopted like these other nations in order to improve cost-effectiveness and overall quality. The constant debate over private versus public in American healthcare achieves nothing.
  3. The parliamentary systems of other countries which allow governments to make changes more quickly are much simpler. They lack the complicated, multi-tiered system of the United States which bogs down any legislation that creates controversy. Other countries have majority rules type of voting and no group with the right to filibuster.
  4. Most countries are less affected by outside influences. The U.S. government is subject to lobbying more so than any other country. Political campaigns in America are very costly, and therefore politicians rely on groups and businesses to help them financially. This leads to a situation where the elected official "owes" his backers. In addition, the media in the U.S. puts its own spin on controversial legislation often causing panic and anger from citizens who do not understand complicated legislation.

There are numerous examples of countries that have gone back and forth on their involvement with various industries, because of the ease of change with their governmental systems. This shows that it is not always a good thing to have systems that easily allow change. However, the complicated American government system has been blocking healthcare reforms since the time of Theodore Roosevelt. It is time to step back and take a good look at the changes that can be made to bring a less than effective health care system up to the standards of other countries.

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