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Want To LIve? Go To France.

Thank God we don't have socialized medicine:
WASHINGTON - France, Japan and Australia rated best and the United States worst in new rankings focusing on preventable deaths due to treatable conditions in 19 leading industrialized nations, researchers said on Tuesday.

If the U.S. health care system performed as well as those of those top three countries, there would be 101,000 fewer deaths in the United States per year, according to researchers writing in the journal Health Affairs.

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“Want To LIve? Go To France.”

  1. Blogger Randy (Internet Ronin) Says:

    Oh, I don't know about that. I find it hard to forget about more than 15,000 old people in nursing homes dying because of heat and the French ignoring them because everyone else was too busy with their annual August vacation to bother with them. Nothing like that has ever happened in this country.

    When one gets into the details, results like this are almost always skewed by the bias of the researchers. Like the oft-trotted out one rating health care quality in general that turns out to apply 25% of the grade to whether or not a nation has socialized medicine before deciding whether or not socialized medicine works better than not having it.

    As French physicians on average make $60,000 per year, perhaps that explains their reluctance to cut short their vactions and do something about their patients dying in masses. No system is all that good and none is all that bad.

  2. Blogger Michael Reynolds Says:

    I find it hard to forget about more than 15,000 old people in nursing homes dying because of heat and the French ignoring them because everyone else was too busy with their annual August vacation to bother with them.

    Global warming may change these numbers. The French still won't buy air conditioners. Cheap bastards.

  3. Blogger Pastor_Jeff Says:

    Ah, I see. Socializing medical care somehow makes people not die. The magical power of government control is the only difference between the populations studied, apparently.

    Except there's this little problem: people are almost as likely to die unnecessarily in the UK under the beneficent NHS as in the US under our evil and negligent system.

    So if you get socialized health care, just make sure to get it from France and not the UK.

    Interesting how the British authors decided to beat up the US when they could just as honestly have written about thousands of Britons dying from preventable diseases, people who can't get health care, and others who are refused treatment for politically incorrect beliefs. Those facts wouldn't have fit the narrative quite as nicely, though.

  4. Blogger Michael Reynolds Says:

    The problem here is that the rhetoric against Hillary care and socialized medicine is so virulent, so overheated, that for it to be plausible we shouldn't be seeing numbers like this, or even close to this. We should be seeing frogs dropping from their cafe stools and landing in the uncollected dog poo. Instead, even if these numbers are tweaked, we see a system or systems that have arguably as good a record as our own, possibly better, that cost a fraction of what ours costs.

    We're paying Ritz-Carlton prices and staying a Red Roof Inn.

  5. Blogger Pastor_Jeff Says:

    Oh, I agree that the rhetoric against Hillary Care is overheated. The government is going to get more involved in health care, one way or another.

    But part of the reason that other countries have effective govt-run healthcare at lower cost is that we do a lot of the heavy lifting in terms of basic R&D. We silly Americans spend billions on medical research in hopes of making a profit from it. The rest of the world benefits from the insights without paying the freight. I understand why that makes our system more expensive and inefficient, but I don't see how it makes us less enlightened.

    Those famously cheap Canadian drugs, for example, are subsidized by Americans paying higher costs. Abbott develops a drug, Canada says "We'll buy X units at Y cost," and Abbott has to make its profit off higher prices in the US market.

    Frankly, it's in other countries' interest to shut up and keep us doing their work for them.

    Of course, changing medical malpractice law would also dramatically lower the costs of medical care by eliminating unnecessary tests, and would reduce the financial disincentives doctors now face. What's the chance of that, though?

    One final thought: given our cultural values, the day may come when entertainment becomes a right and people start clamoring for government to reign in the costs of books and movies -- which means salary caps for writers, along with government control of the market and punishments for people going outside the system to create or get non-gov't entertainment. Hmmmmmm.

  6. Blogger fabius.maximus.cunctator Says:

    Pastor Jeff:

    I was was almost moved to tears, well almost, by your contention that virtuous, forthright Americans are paying for the rest of the world. The idea of medical companies being philantrophic concerns is also quite new to me. Aren´t all those research results legally protected ?
    As I am paying XXX (!) every month into a mixed private / "socialized" system here in old Germany to keep my loved ones and myself insured I´d love to remember each month how much I´ve saved thank to your people`s exertions. So can you please provide data on that to enlighten me ?