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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 8/5/09

Real Health Care Reform - Universal Single Payer

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Real Health Care Reform - Universal Single-Payer


Organizations like Physicians for a National Health Program want Americans to have the same system in place in all other Western countries and elsewhere, including Venezuela, South Korea, Japan, Cuba, Brazil, Saudi Arabia, Costa Rica, Singapore, Taiwan, and Thailand. But not in America - the only industrialized country without it despite spending more than double per capita than the other 30 OECD countries and delivering less for it.


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In a September 2007 report to Congress, the Congressional Research Service (CRS) compared 2004 US health care spending with other OECD countries:


-- America then averaged $6,102 per person, well over double the average $2,560 for OECD countries;

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-- US health care spending was 15.3% of the economy compared to 8.9% on average for OECD countries; for Canada it was 9.9%; Germany - 10.6%; Great Britain - 8.1%; France - 10.5%; and Japan 8.0%;


-- "US prices for medical care commodities and services are significantly higher than in other countries (delivering comparable care) and serve as a key determinant of higher overall spending;" high insurance and drug costs are the most significant factors;


-- life expectancy in America is lower than in other OECD countries;

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-- the US ranks 22nd on life expectancy at birth; post-65, it's 11th for men and 13th for women;


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I was born in 1934, am a retired, progressive small businessman concerned about all the major national and world issues, committed to speak out and write about them.
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