Why does a simple colonoscopy cost Americans nearly $7,000 when the same procedure costs $700 in the rest of the advanced nations?
These high costs explain why the United States is a clear outlier — “A statistical anomaly, a data point that does not fit the ‘curve’ or the trend of other datapoints”—in health care and defense spending — compared to similar expenditures in the rest of the industrialized nations
How did we fall into this abyss?
But, doctors and hospitals are not, by any means, the only cause of out-of-control healthcare spending. Drug companies and insurance companies play a large role in this national conspiracy. The nation’s leading health insurance companies gave more than $100 million to help fuel the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s efforts to defeat and water-down President Obama’s health care reform law according to the National Journal’s Influence Alley.
product—more than twice as much as any other nation but with much worse results. The World Health Organization says the U.S. ranks behind 36 other countries. A recent study by the prestigious National Research Council found the US ranked 17 out of 17 industrial nations measuring life expectancy, infant mortality, heart disease and other criterion. Last year, the Commonwealth Fund ranked the U.S. last when compared to six other industrialized counties. The U.S. stands out for not getting good value for its healthcare dollars, which is evident to anyone who bothers to measure results.Almost one million people in the U.S. go bankrupt every year because they are unable to pay their medical bills. In other industrialized countries, nobody goes bankrupt because they can’t pay their medical bills, according to a Frontline Survey by T.R. Reid a few years ago.
Preserving U.S. preeminence and influence overseas will come from restoring economic growth and curbing the pernicious, often secret, power of committed interest groups.