President Trump took to Twitter early in the morning after the Republicans failed to unite around their monstrous health care bill. He touted his own engagement around the issue of health care, tweeting, “I know the subject well & want victory for U.S.”
Far from what Trump wants, a health care victory for the American people would be establishing a truly universal health care system for all.
As it stands, the US health care model fails in any global ranking. A look at statistics regarding health care systems around the world shows where the US is lacking and highlights the urgent need for universal care in America.
The US spends much more per person for health care than other countries. At the same time, it is the only major nation that does not provide universal health care.
The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, a leading source for health care statistics worldwide, recently reported that the US is the only nation among 41 countries that does not require paid parental leave for new parents. This graph from the Pew Research Center breaks down the findings.
Cost-Related Barriers to Health Care Access in the US
The Commonwealth Fund, a research organization promoting access to medical services, did an international survey of 11 nations in 2016. Their research found that adults in the US are “far more likely than those in other countries to go without needed care because of costs and to struggle to afford basic necessities such as housing and healthy food.” The following graph based on the Commonwealth Fund’s research demonstrates that among the selected countries, the US leads in cost-related barriers to health care access.
Global Comparisons to US Health Care
Findings from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development were utilized for these CNN infographics comparing US health care access and quality to other nations.
A 2010 medical research paper on health care systems around the world found that the following countries, highlighted in green, provide some type of universal health care plan. It is notable that the US, in spite of its high expenditures on health care and large GDP, is the only major nation in the world that does not provide universal health care to its citizens.
“At its root, the lack of health care for all in America is fundamentally a moral issue,” an article from the American Medical Students Association (AMSA) explains. “The United States is the only industrialized nation that does not have some form of universal health care (defined as a basic guarantee of health care to all of its citizens).”
“Is it indeed acceptable to deny people health care based on their ability to pay?” the AMSA writes. “Or is health care a basic need that should be provided to every American as a matter of course? If the answer is the latter, then we need to […] create a society in which health care is available to all.”
Benjamin Dangl has a PhD in history from McGill University and is the editor of TowardFreedom.com, a progressive perspective on world events.