Nov 3, 2012

US health care costs: where are we getting our money's worth

A recent article on the PBS website by Jason Kane provides a thorough and thoughtful discussion on US health care costs and how they compare to other countries.  

We spend considerably more on healthcare than everyone else, including other rich countries, and in most areas we do not seem to get our money's worth.  Our health and our longevity are no better than others who spend much less.  In many areas of medicine, we do more procedures and more tests than the rest of the world, but don't seem to get better results.

So are there any areas where we do get some bang for our buck?

Yes there are.  The author points out that cancer outcomes are better in the US than anywhere else and these are important outcomes, like survival!  The other area where we lead the world in is medical research.  There are currently 119,469 clinical trials underway in the United States, far more than any other country.  In addition to that, new drugs and devices get approved faster in the US than most other places.  Yes, you heard that right. 

We need to get better value for the health care dollars that we spend, but it's great to know that there is one area where we appear to get our money's worth and that is cancer care.  

To put a smile on your face see Larry's latest cartoon.
To learn more about clinical trials, take a look at our book.

(c) 2012 Tom Beer and Larry Axmaker

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