• Quote: Best in the world my ass

    Politicians say a lot of dumb things, but perhaps the dumbest thing they say is that the U.S. has “the finest health care system in the world.” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said that in 2012, echoing a common Republican talking point in opposition to health care reform.

    No. Stop saying this. The American health care system sucks.

    We spend about twice as much money per person as our peer countries to achieve roughly the same health care outcomes — and despite all that spending, 48 million people in America lack health insurance coverage.

    and

    But the real problem with Obamacare is that it does not change the American health care system enough in the direction of other countries’ systems. Republicans are wrong to warn that Obamacare will turn America’s health care system into a European-style one. I wish they were right.

    Josh Barro, Business Insider

    @aaronecarroll

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    • My wife just gave birth to our (healthy) baby in Manhattan a month ago. I can tell you from direct experience: there is no way this is the best healthcare in the world.

    • “We spend about twice as much money per person as our peer countries to achieve roughly the same health care outcomes — and despite all that spending, 48 million people in America lack health insurance coverage.”

      Uh. Point of order. The quality, cost, and who pays for health care are, essentially, unrelated issues. (Well, observing the Japanese system, I’d say that cost and quality are inversely related: the cheapest industrialized country health care system is far better than the most expensive one. And there is a causal relation here: letting the system run out of control (US) means that you get bad expensive medicine; draconian costs controls mean you are watching what doctors do more closely. But in logical principle, cost and quality aren’t necessarily related. (And Japan does have problems: malpractice law in Japan is even more doctor-friendly than that it in the US, so the patients who are hurt have close to zero redress, as opposed to the tiny percentage of harmed patients who make it to settlement or success in trial in the US.)

      If you want to talk about quality, then the horrific amount of medical malpractice that occurs in the US needs to be discussed. The US health care system kills more Americans than automobile and workplace accidents combined (according to extremely conservative estimates).