From "Connect The Dots USA"
Compared to other developed countries, the U.S. spends far more overall.
In 2009, that was 17.4% of our entire economy (GDP), with more than
half coming from private spending. The next biggest spenders are France,
Germany, Canada and Switzerland, which each spend about 11% to 12% of
GDP and still manage to cover all their people. Taiwan set up its
single-payer system from scratch in 1995, took its uninsured from 41%
down to 8% within just the first year of operation, and now spends only
7% of its economy on healthcare with everyone insured. The Taiwanese,
like the Japanese, go to the doctor on average 15 times/year compared to
the U.S. average of 5 times/year. Patients have free choice of any
hospital, clinic or doctor, so providers compete furiously for
customers. When researching the developed world for the best healthcare
model to follow, the Taiwanese quickly rejected America’s crazy quilt as
a cautionary tale in what to avoid.
Not only are Americans being gouged by Big Insurance, Big Pharma and hospitals are screwing us, too. A one-day hospital stay averages nearly $4,000 in the U.S., but it’s less than $700 in Germany and Switzerland. An MRI averages $1,080 in the U.S., but it’s only $599 in Germany, $281 in France, and $105 in Japan. Need a coronary bypass? Expect to pay more than $67,000 in the U.S., compared to less than $17,000 in Germany and $26,000 in Switzerland. A prescription of Nexium will run you $193 in the U.S. but only $36 in Canada. It’s no wonder Big Pharma always blocks legislation that would allow Americans to import the same brand name drugs from Canada. In France, the price and co-pay for every procedure is posted on the wall of the doctor’s office, but in the U.S. consumers can’t even get an estimate in advance because the same procedure in the same hospital on the same day can have ten different prices, depending on who’s paying.