Saturday, August 1, 2009

Why most Americans are happy with their health care

May come as a surprise to anyone stupid enough to take Michael Moore seriously. After all, this was the man whose film Roger and Me was predicated on the claim, now known to be false, that GM's "Roger" was running from him and refusing to do an on-camera interview.

Except that Roger did not one, but two, on-camera interviews with Moore. Moore simply left them on the cutting room floor and lied in saying that Roger wouldn't talk to him.

 Likewise with Sicko. Canada is not the health care paradise that Moore tried to make it out to be. The government run national health care program shows all the usual characteristics of overly bureaucratic systems. It is slow, unresponsive and absurdly expensive.

I'm aware of a Canadian orthopaedic surgeon who has an recorded message on her office phone informing people that her diary is fully booked two to three years in advance.

And this is by no means unusual.

But if your dog needs a hip replacement, that can be done within a week.

Ordinary Canadians though have no choice but to just wait. And wait and wait.

If however you have money, you get on a plane and fly over the border to the United States, as did one prominent supporter of the national health care system (which basically does not allow private health insurance) from the Liberal Party. She refused to consider changes to the system in Canada, but headed straight to the US when it came to one of her own family needing hospital treatment.

Anyone who keeps an eye on the British National Health Service would be aware of a system that seems to be perpetually teetering on the brink of collapse, no matter how much public money is poured into it.

Anyway, this is from the Powerline Blog:

There are many nuances to the current health care debate and a number of reasons why, despite the Democrats' huge congressional majorities, they are having so much trouble passing, and even formulating, legislation. But the most important reason by far is this: most Americans like the health care they receive.

In fact, according to Scott Atlas of the Hoover Institution, "more than half of Americans (51.3 percent) are very satisfied with their health care services and only 6.8 percent are dissatisfied.

There's a good reason for this: most Americans receive good health care services and our much maligned system produces better results than government run systems such as Canada's. For example, again according to Atlas:
Americans have better survival rates than Europeans for common cancers.

Americans have lower cancer mortality rates than Canadians.

Americans have better access to preventive cancer screening than Canadians.

Lower-income Americans are in better health than comparable Canadians.

Americans spend less time waiting for care than patients in Canada and the United Kingdom.

Americans have better access to important new technologies such as medical imaging than do patients in Canada or Britain.

It's no accident that President Obama is attempting to demonize the health insurance industry. He needs a villain and the insurance companies represent the one part of the health care system that can really be cast as such.

But it's doubtful that Americans hate insurance companies enough to support the overhaul of a health care system that they believe, with good reason, provides them with good care overall.

Via Jonah Goldberg at the Corner.

Posted via email from Garth's posterous

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