The United States is one of the richest countries in the world, but compared to other high-income countries, the United States ranks last in access to healthcare, equality and outcomes, according to a report released this week. This is despite the fact that a lot more GDP is spent on healthcare compared to other countries, according to the study.
The Commonwealth Fund ranks high-income countries on the basis of access to care, the process of care, administrative efficiency, equity and health outcomes. The United States has been in last place every year since 2004, when the organization began tracking results. The main reason is that the United States is the only country out of the 11 countries on the list that does not have universal health insurance. The other countries are Australia, Canada, France, Germany, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.
David Blumenthal, president of the Commonwealth Fund, told CNN that US health insurance does not provide adequate protection and harms the health and money of Americans. This means that people are forced to leave health care or enter into medical debt.
In fact, half of low-income adults in the US reported not receiving care due to cost, compared to just 12% of low-income adults in the UK. About 25% of high-income Americans said they would forgo care because of the cost, and 7% in the UK
“No other country reduces income inequality through access to health care so radically as here,” Blumenthal said. “Many people cannot afford the care they need and many are uninsured, especially compared to other wealthy countries.”
Not only low-income Americans were affected. The study found that in all of the other countries surveyed, a high-income US citizen was more likely to report financial impairment than a low-income person.
Norway, the Netherlands and Australia scored the highest in the study. The United States also scored poorly in maternal mortality, infant mortality, life expectancy, and deaths that could have been prevented with timely access to care and administrative efficiency.
The United States excelled in the sponsorship process and ranked second. Mammography and influenza vaccination rates for older adults and the number of adults who spoke to a health care provider about diet, smoking, and alcohol consumption were higher than in other countries.
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