OP-ED: To Fix Health, Help the Poor: Health Care spending vs. Social Spending

NY Times: By ELIZABETH H. BRADLEY and LAUREN TAYLOR. Our study found that countries with high health care spending relative to social spending had lower life expectancy and higher infant mortality than countries that favored social spending. While the stagnating life expectancy in the United States remains at 78 years, in many European countries it has leapt to well over 80 years, and several countries boast infant mortality rates approximately half of ours. In a national survey conducted by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, four out of five physicians agreed that unmet social needs led directly to worse health.

Unfortunately, instead of learning from countries like Sweden and France, we prefer the frantic scramble to recover money from one part of the health care system only to reallocate it toward retreads of previously failed reforms.

Read more: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/09/opinion/to-fix-health-care-help-the-poor.html?src=me&ref=general

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