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Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

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  • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

    Originally posted by JDJarvis View Post
    untrue. The conclusion of Steffie Woodlander was that "62.1 percent of the bankruptcies were medically related because the individuals either have more than $5,000 (or 10 percent of their pretax income) in medical bills, mortgaged their home to their home to pay for medical bills, or lost significant income due to an illness."

    It doesn't hold that 62% of bankruptcies are due to medical bills.

    Another study in 2007 showed only 2.4% of families had any medical debt and that while bankruptcies had increase by 25% over the studied decade there has been no significant change in share of overall debt due to medical bills.

    Testimony on "The Medical Bankruptcy Fairness Act" - Health - AEI
    I'm not so sure I'm going to trust one American Enterprise Institute "scholar" over the various studies commissioned by the people who don't have an inherent bias in what they report.

    מה מכילות החדשות?


    • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

      Originally posted by Rude Boy View Post
      I'm not so sure I'm going to trust one American Enterprise Institute "scholar" over the various studies commissioned by the people who don't have an inherent bias in what they report.
      There is NO WAY "only 2.4% of families had any medical debt and that while bankruptcies had increase by 25% over the studied decade there has been no significant change in share of overall debt due to medical bills." That is right wing propaganda.

      מה מכילות החדשות?


      • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

        Originally posted by Rude Boy View Post
        I'm not so sure I'm going to trust one American Enterprise Institute "scholar" over the various studies commissioned by the people who don't have an inherent bias in what they report.
        What "various studies" are you referencing here?

        I opened/read all of you links and the only one I'd really call a "study" is the Woolhandler/Harvard Medical School piece.

        Two things about that though. First, I think it's being a bit ingenuous to assert that the author(s) don't have an inherent bias toward, or at least a vested interest in, the subject. Second, while the study, should you choose to believe the authors' analysis, may indicate that ~62% of bankruptcies were medical-related not then they claim that they were caused by medical/insurance issues. I can see where that would be a conclusion one would jump to (and the authors certainly expect that readers will) but based simply on what I read that's not a necessary conclusion.

        Regarding the AEI scholar's testimony, here's a link to it in full: http://www.aei.org/files/2010/07/15/...cyFairness.pdf

        You'll note that it includes citations to all the sources used in building the report and from a very cursory analysis of those sources (primarially government polls and studies) I'm satisfied that the author's conclusions are fairly straightforward and accurate.

        At best/worst I think we have to conclude that both sides make valid, though perhaps not final/conclusive, and certainly biased (on both sides) arguments that support their respective positions on the matter.

        מה מכילות החדשות?


        • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

          Originally posted by soot View Post
          What "various studies" are you referencing here?

          I opened/read all of you links and the only one I'd really call a "study" is the Woolhandler/Harvard Medical School piece.

          Two things about that though. First, I think it's being a bit ingenuous to assert that the author(s) don't have an inherent bias toward, or at least a vested interest in, the subject. Second, while the study, should you choose to believe the authors' analysis, may indicate that ~62% of bankruptcies were medical-related not then they claim that they were caused by medical/insurance issues. I can see where that would be a conclusion one would jump to (and the authors certainly expect that readers will) but based simply on what I read that's not a necessary conclusion.

          Regarding the AEI scholar's testimony, here's a link to it in full: http://www.aei.org/files/2010/07/15/...cyFairness.pdf

          You'll note that it includes citations to all the sources used in building the report and from a very cursory analysis of those sources (primarially government polls and studies) I'm satisfied that the author's conclusions are fairly straightforward and accurate.

          At best/worst I think we have to conclude that both sides make valid, though perhaps not final/conclusive, and certainly biased (on both sides) arguments that support their respective positions on the matter.
          I was a bit clumsy with my words. It has been some time (since 2009 and many beers ago), since I read the study (and so I conflated that with that being "various"); mea culpa.

          Fair point about both sides having validity, but I will opt for the one not from an American Enterprise Institute "scholar" who's major beef with the study was "methodology." What was hers? (Admittedly, I did not read the link you provided, so that question may already have been answered.

          מה מכילות החדשות?


          • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

            Originally posted by soot View Post
            What "various studies" are you referencing here?

            I opened/read all of you links and the only one I'd really call a "study" is the Woolhandler/Harvard Medical School piece.

            Two things about that though. First, I think it's being a bit ingenuous to assert that the author(s) don't have an inherent bias toward, or at least a vested interest in, the subject. Second, while the study, should you choose to believe the authors' analysis, may indicate that ~62% of bankruptcies were medical-related not then they claim that they were caused by medical/insurance issues. I can see where that would be a conclusion one would jump to (and the authors certainly expect that readers will) but based simply on what I read that's not a necessary conclusion.

            Regarding the AEI scholar's testimony, here's a link to it in full: http://www.aei.org/files/2010/07/15/...cyFairness.pdf

            You'll note that it includes citations to all the sources used in building the report and from a very cursory analysis of those sources (primarially government polls and studies) I'm satisfied that the author's conclusions are fairly straightforward and accurate.

            At best/worst I think we have to conclude that both sides make valid, though perhaps not final/conclusive, and certainly biased (on both sides) arguments that support their respective positions on the matter.
            I'm sorry, but I don't trust AEI, home of the Trotskyist neocons, or any of the corporate mouthpieces. If Richard Mellon Scaife said children needed to be run through a wood chipper, AEI would author a study promoting it.

            AEI 'scholars' are only ALLOWED to speak right wing doctrine. And if they speak the truth, their ass is fired...ask former Bush speechwriter Dave Frum.

            Frum exposed that Republicans plotted against the President and tried to destroy health care reform...he was canned...

            Waterloo
            by David Frum

            "At the beginning of this process we made a strategic decision: unlike, say, Democrats in 2001 when President Bush proposed his first tax cut, we would make no deal with the administration. No negotiations, no compromise, nothing. We were going for all the marbles. This would be Obama’s Waterloo – just as healthcare was Clinton’s in 1994."

            ----------------------------------------------------------------------
            Then Bruce Bartlett exposed that AEI 'scholars' were ordered ordered not to speak to the media (about the health care bill) because they agreed with too much of what Obama was trying to do.

            David Frum and the Closing of the Conservative Mind
            Posted by Bruce Bartlett

            As some readers of this blog may know, I was fired by a right wing think tank called the National Center for Policy Analysis in 2005 for writing a book critical of George W. Bush's policies, especially his support for Medicare Part D. In the years since, I have lost a great many friends and been shunned by conservative society in Washington, DC.

            Now the same thing has happened to David Frum, who has been fired by the American Enterprise Institute. I don't know all the details, but I presume that his Waterloo post on Sunday condemning Republicans for failing to work with Democrats on healthcare reform was the final straw.

            Since, he is no longer affiliated with AEI, I feel free to say publicly something he told me in private a few months ago. He asked if I had noticed any comments by AEI "scholars" on the subject of health care reform. I said no and he said that was because they had been ordered not to speak to the media because they agreed with too much of what Obama was trying to do.

            Sadly, there is no place for David and me to go. The donor community is only interested in financing organizations that parrot the party line, such as the one recently established by McCain economic adviser Doug Holtz-Eakin.

            מה מכילות החדשות?


            • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

              Originally posted by TomBlaze View Post
              So centralizing power to a handful of corporations is a better idea? Corporations are dictatorships and the general public has no say in how they conduct their business. At least a government is a reflection of the will of the people. At least it is supposed to be.
              Centralizing power is a good idea, just as long as it doesn't go too far. One of the reasons our founding fathers did not create a democracy is because it leads to chaos and gridlock as coming to a final decision is so difficult. When one person is in charge of everything, finding policy direction is very quick and easy. Not everyone gets a say, but the efficiency is worth it sometimes.

              And it is not true that the public has no say in how corporations conduct business. In a capitalist economy, yes, these corporations are dictatorships, but they have to compete for the public's money. Therefore, they have to give them at least something that they want. I'll admit that, yes, this is not working as well as it should today . . . because there is an unholy marriage between government and big business where the big businesses purchase politicians that give them protection from market competition.

              But is the government any better at reflecting the will of the people? I mean, once every four years (or perhaps two) you get to choose "red or blue," and the differences these days are mostly superficial. Tell me how that is supposed to reflect the will of the people. Were we able to stop the bailouts? Were we able to break up the big banks?

              מה מכילות החדשות?


              • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

                Korimir
                No, but I would say that society-- as in the vast majority of the individual members of society, rich and poor alike-- has an enlightened self interest in doing so. There's no such self-interest attached to spending a million dollars a month to keep a 90 year old man on life support, but that's a different thing entirely from spending a several thousand a year on average in order to keep a 40 year old man healthy enough to work full time so that he continue to support his children and pay his taxes.
                I am very happy with the healthcare I receive. And anyone who is not a complete fool would realize that there is NO way that current health care resources can be given to substantially larger number of patientes without those who already receive superalative care getting less (and unless the government is going to let market forces work, there will not be a comensurate increase in healthcare resources to cover the increased patient load).

                So no, it is not in MY interest, enlightened or otherwise, for the government to in effect tax ME more in order to GIVE healthcare to others, and in doing so diminish the healthcare resources that will be available for ME.

                I do find it interesting that you are tacitly placing the decisions for who lives and who dies into the hands of government.

                Bfgrn
                Maybe you missed this part:

                "if the single payer financing of Medicare were applied to citizens of all ages, we would save $350 billion annually, more than enough to provide comprehensive health care to every American."
                Didn't miss it, just too fucking sensible to belive that nonesense. It is a flat out lie, based on the utterly dishonest premise that there will be enough healthcare resources for actual comprensive CARE (as opposed to "coverage") to provide all americans anywhere close to the level of healthCARE currently received by MOST americans already. The same people who bring you that bogus number, are the ones who are currently under projecting the actual costs of Medicare by pretending that reimbursement rates for Doctors are going to go down dramatically...next year (even though Congress ALWAYS passes extensions to put this off).

                מה מכילות החדשות?


                • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

                  Originally posted by Marcus1124 View Post
                  I am very happy with the healthcare I receive. And anyone who is not a complete fool would realize that there is NO way that current health care resources can be given to substantially larger number of patientes without those who already receive superalative care getting less (and unless the government is going to let market forces work, there will not be a comensurate increase in healthcare resources to cover the increased patient load).

                  So no, it is not in MY interest, enlightened or otherwise, for the government to in effect tax ME more in order to GIVE healthcare to others, and in doing so diminish the healthcare resources that will be available for ME.

                  I do find it interesting that you are tacitly placing the decisions for who lives and who dies into the hands of government.



                  Didn't miss it, just too fucking sensible to belive that nonesense. It is a flat out lie, based on the utterly dishonest premise that there will be enough healthcare resources for actual comprensive CARE (as opposed to "coverage") to provide all americans anywhere close to the level of healthCARE currently received by MOST americans already. The same people who bring you that bogus number, are the ones who are currently under projecting the actual costs of Medicare by pretending that reimbursement rates for Doctors are going to go down dramatically...next year (even though Congress ALWAYS passes extensions to put this off).
                  Well, here is someone who would not be classified by you as the 'same people who bring you that bogus number'

                  Here is a market-driven entrepreneur.


                  Bill Brody, M.D. President, Salk Institute for Biomedical Research

                  Dr. William R. Brody, an acclaimed physician-scientist, entrepreneur and university leader, joined the Salk Institute for Biological Studies on March 2, 2009 after 12 years as president of The Johns Hopkins University.



                  June 13, 2003

                  Is Medicare Cost Effective?

                  I recently spent a half-day in a meeting discussing a number of issues regarding Medicare. Most of us on the provider side of the street view Medicare as this multiheaded bureaucracy with more pages of regulations than the Internal Revenue Service's tax code. However, I came away from the meeting with some (to me at least) shocking revelations:

                  Medicare beneficiaries are overwhelmingly satisfied with their Medicare coverage, except for the absence of prescription drug benefits;

                  The administrative costs of Medicare are lower than any other large health plan.

                  In fact, Medicare is very efficient by any objective means:

                  According to the Urban Institute's Marilyn Moon, who testified before the Senate Committee on Aging, Medicare expenditures between 1970 and 2000 grew more slowly than those of the private sector. Initially, from 1965 through the 1980s, Medicare and private insurance costs doubled in tandem. Then Medicare tightened up, and per capita expenditures grew more slowly than private insurance, creating a significant gap. In the 1990s, private insurers got more serious about controlling their costs, and the gap narrowed. But by 2000, Medicare per capita expenditures remained significantly lower than the private sector.

                  Moon argues somewhat convincingly that Medicare has been a success. While not necessarily denying that certain reforms might be needed, she stresses the importance of preserving three essential tenets of the program:

                  1. Its universal coverage nature creates the ability to redistribute benefits to those who are neediest.

                  2. It pools risk in order to share the burdens of health care among the healthy and the sick.

                  3. Through Medicare, the government protects the rights of all beneficiaries to essential health care.

                  It has been argued that, in part, Medicare's cost effectiveness arises from the fact that it does not need to expend funds on marketing and sales-functions that are obligatory for the success of competitive, private-sector health plans. Moreover, some argue that the competitive model for health insurance has not been successful. In a market-driven economy, the healthy can and will change health plans for savings of only a few dollars a month, while the sick must remain in their existing plan in order to retain their physicians. Such behaviors lead to asymmetric risk pools and cost inequities.

                  This was all sobering news to a market-driven entrepreneur such as yours truly. However, given the perverse incentives that frequently drive behavior in health care, my take-home lesson is that there are examples in the success of Medicare we can apply to other sectors of our population.

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                  • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

                    Originally posted by Marcus1124 View Post
                    I am very happy with the healthcare I receive. And anyone who is not a complete fool would realize that there is NO way that current health care resources can be given to substantially larger number of patientes without those who already receive superalative care getting less (and unless the government is going to let market forces work, there will not be a comensurate increase in healthcare resources to cover the increased patient load).

                    So no, it is not in MY interest, enlightened or otherwise, for the government to in effect tax ME more in order to GIVE healthcare to others, and in doing so diminish the healthcare resources that will be available for ME.

                    I do find it interesting that you are tacitly placing the decisions for who lives and who dies into the hands of government.



                    Didn't miss it, just too fucking sensible to belive that nonesense. It is a flat out lie, based on the utterly dishonest premise that there will be enough healthcare resources for actual comprensive CARE (as opposed to "coverage") to provide all americans anywhere close to the level of healthCARE currently received by MOST americans already. The same people who bring you that bogus number, are the ones who are currently under projecting the actual costs of Medicare by pretending that reimbursement rates for Doctors are going to go down dramatically...next year (even though Congress ALWAYS passes extensions to put this off).
                    You want us to believe you when you say it's a lie but then you don't provide anything to refute it?

                    Also, as to resources, blah, blah, blah, why can other nations do it? I thought we were the wealthiest nation on earth.

                    America, fuck yeah!

                    Also, I noticed a trend here: Most of the people against a single-payer system's only reason is because it all about them. It's "me, me, me" ... they have no sense of community and helping one another; something that this nation is actually sometimes known for. I notice, too, that it tends to be of the teabagger crowd.

                    I've never seen more selfish sons of bitches on one board cry that it's all about them. Hey, guys, get off the roads I pay for, and don't call an ambulance or the police. I paid for those services, you bunch of free-loaders!

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                    • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

                      Rude Boy
                      You want us to believe you when you say it's a lie but then you don't provide anything to refute it?
                      The fact that you lack the basic reasoning skills or common sense to fail to see how ridiculous the assumptions those number are based on (because of ideological rigidity, genuine lack of intellectual capacity, or wilfull ignorance) indicates that any time spent on my part doing so would be an irratiional waste of time on my part.


                      Rude boy
                      Also, I noticed a trend here: Most of the people against a single-payer system's only reason is because it all about them. It's "me, me, me" ... they have no sense of community and helping one another; something that this nation is actually sometimes known for. I notice, too, that it tends to be of the teabagger crowd.

                      I've never seen more selfish sons of bitches on one board cry that it's all about them. Hey, guys, get off the roads I pay for, and don't call an ambulance or the police. I paid for those services, you bunch of free-loaders!
                      Gee, I have lived my life responsibly, completing highschool (and college), not knocking anyone up out of wedlock, and not engaging in drug or alcohol abuse. I get up 5-6 days a week and go to work. I work 45-60 hour work weeks. This hard work and responsibility has afforded me a good standard of living, good healthcare, good benefits. I am willing to bet I have paid far more in taxes than you have in the last 10 years, and I guarantee you that I pay more than you have, and have DEFINITELY paid more than about 80% of people in this country. So thank you, but I PAID for those streets and police and ambulances that 80% of the people in this country who have paid far less (to NO) taxes. My sense of community is that I have a moral, ethical, and patriotic duty to work hard, live responsibly and morally, and to first and foremost NOT be a burden on society more generally. That is a FAR CRY from the useless urban blight represented so typically by the OWC (who bring disease and rat infestations). I owe NOTHING to people who have cost this nation trillions of dollars over the decades because of their irresponsibility and laziness. THEY owe us for tolerating them, let alone supporting their asses.

                      And let's top this ignorant and dishonest pleading of how if I don't want to pay 40%+ of my income to government that it won't be possible to maintain roads, or police, or ambulances. very little of what I already pay in taxes go to those things.

                      The government collects more than enough in taxes on gasoline and tolls at all levels of government to cover what we spend on roads and bridges (in fact, they collect enough to supplement other spending with it).

                      It is amazing that in your world view, people that are perfectly willing to pay the relatively low level of taxes neccesary (if everyone paid them) to fund those basic functions of govenrment from which we all benefit generally (roads, police, courts, defense, public safety, etc.) and who otherwise want to be left alone, content to provide for themselves and their families are selfish and have no sense of community, but the many who show no sene of personal accountability or responsibility, and who have a sense of entitlement that others are respsonsible for paying for their poor decisions are someone morally superior.

                      BTW, if I am so fucking selfish, why do I give to charity?

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                      • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

                        Originally posted by Marcus1124 View Post
                        The fact that you lack the basic reasoning skills or common sense to fail to see how ridiculous the assumptions those number are based on (because of ideological rigidity, genuine lack of intellectual capacity, or wilfull ignorance) indicates that any time spent on my part doing so would be an irratiional waste of time on my part.

                        Originally posted by John Drake
                        Your spelling of "I don't know how I know but I just do and if you're too stupid to recognise my inherent superiority that's just another proof of it" is a little off.
                        Gee, I have lived my life responsibly, completing highschool (and college), not knocking anyone up out of wedlock, and not engaging in drug or alcohol abuse. I get up 5-6 days a week and go to work. I work 45-60 hour work weeks. This hard work and responsibility has afforded me a good standard of living, good healthcare, good benefits. I am willing to bet I have paid far more in taxes than you have in the last 10 years, and I guarantee you that I pay more than you have, and have DEFINITELY paid more than about 80% of people in this country. So thank you, but I PAID for those streets and police and ambulances that 80% of the people in this country who have paid far less (to NO) taxes. My sense of community is that I have a moral, ethical, and patriotic duty to work hard, live responsibly and morally, and to first and foremost NOT be a burden on society more generally. That is a FAR CRY from the useless urban blight represented so typically by the OWC (who bring disease and rat infestations). I owe NOTHING to people who have cost this nation trillions of dollars over the decades because of their irresponsibility and laziness. THEY owe us for tolerating them, let alone supporting their asses.

                        And let's top this ignorant and dishonest pleading of how if I don't want to pay 40%+ of my income to government that it won't be possible to maintain roads, or police, or ambulances. very little of what I already pay in taxes go to those things.

                        The government collects more than enough in taxes on gasoline and tolls at all levels of government to cover what we spend on roads and bridges (in fact, they collect enough to supplement other spending with it).

                        It is amazing that in your world view, people that are perfectly willing to pay the relatively low level of taxes neccesary (if everyone paid them) to fund those basic functions of govenrment from which we all benefit generally (roads, police, courts, defense, public safety, etc.) and who otherwise want to be left alone, content to provide for themselves and their families are selfish and have no sense of community, but the many who show no sene of personal accountability or responsibility, and who have a sense of entitlement that others are respsonsible for paying for their poor decisions are someone morally superior.

                        BTW, if I am so fucking selfish, why do I give to charity?
                        Probably out of guilt for being so arrogant.

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                        • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

                          To reiterate, a reasonable case can be made for a multi-payer universal health care system. However, the left-wing infatuation with single-payer is pure ideology. Single-payer has been tested in the real world against multi-payer, and multi-payer is clearly superior on every metric except cost.

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                          • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

                            Originally posted by adaher View Post
                            To reiterate, a reasonable case can be made for a multi-payer universal health care system. However, the left-wing infatuation with single-payer is pure ideology. Single-payer has been tested in the real world against multi-payer, and multi-payer is clearly superior on every metric except cost.
                            You keep saying the same thing without any proof. As a matter of fact, your argument has been proven false.

                            America’s Health Care System at the Bottom of the Heap

                            A recent study reported in the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine compared the amounts of money spent by nineteen Western countries on health care relative to their respective gross domestic product (GDP). The authors, Professor Colin Pritchard of the Bournemouth University School of Health and Social Care, and Dr. Mark Wallace of the Latymer School of London, ranked countries by the average percentage of GDP spent on health care between 1979 and 2005. They then looked at mortality rates for “all adults” (15-74 years old) and for just the “older” population (55-74) to determine a cost-effective ratio, i.e., how much “bang for the buck” each country has been getting for the money spent. The conclusions are striking.

                            Mortality Rates

                            The study then looked at trends in mortality rates for both the entire adult population (15-74) and for older people (55-74). Deaths per million population were looked at, and the authors found that mortality rates had declined in segments of this population in every country, an indication that medical science has indeed improved over the past few decades.

                            Utilizing standard statistical tools and analysis, the authors then ranked the same 19 countries according to their effectiveness in reducing the mortality rate for the elderly populace ages 55 to 74. Comparing the amount of money spent by each country on health care and the reduced mortality rates, the countries fell into the following ranking:

                            1. Ireland
                            2. United Kingdom
                            3. New Zealand
                            4. Austria
                            5. Australia
                            6. Italy
                            7. Finland
                            8. Japan
                            9. Spain
                            10. Sweden
                            11. Canada
                            12. Netherlands
                            13. France
                            14. Norway
                            15. Greece
                            16. Germany
                            17. USA
                            18. Portugal
                            19. Switzerland

                            America ranks number one in cost per GDP but ranks 17th out of 19 industrialized countries in mortality rates. The top 15 countries all have strong state funding of single-payer universal health care, instead of insurance based health care tied to employment. The bottom four countries – Germany, USA, Portugal and Switzerland – all depend more heavily on profit-based, private health insurance provided primarily through the employer/employee relationship.


                            No passion so effectually robs the mind of all its powers of acting and reasoning as fear.
                            Edmund Burke

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                            • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

                              That is false, and mortality rates have little to do with health care. If you look at one stat that has a lot to do with health care, wait times, the multi-payer systems are vastly superior. They also fare better in terms of life expectancy, although like mortality, that has only a little to do with health care.

                              As for your list, I can spot a few in your top 15 that aren't single payer. Austria is multi-payer, Netherlands is multi-payer, Sweden is decentralized, with health care handled at the county level, which is unusual, but guarantees competition between regions. Japan is multi-payer. Italy is multi-payer. France is multi-payer.

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                              • Re: Should the Government Provide Free Universal Health Care for All Americans?

                                Originally posted by adaher View Post
                                That is false, and mortality rates have little to do with health care. If you look at one stat that has a lot to do with health care, wait times, the multi-payer systems are vastly superior. They also fare better in terms of life expectancy, although like mortality, that has only a little to do with health care.

                                As for your list, I can spot a few in your top 15 that aren't single payer. Austria is multi-payer, Netherlands is multi-payer, Sweden is decentralized, with health care handled at the county level, which is unusual, but guarantees competition between regions. Japan is multi-payer. Italy is multi-payer. France is multi-payer.
                                I am really getting sick of your emotes without PROOF...link up!

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