richrf
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 08:41 am
@Aedes,
Aedes;68261 wrote:

The UK has its own problems, one of which being among the lowest pediatric vaccine coverage and highest rates of vaccine-preventable disease in the entire developed world. Why is that?


People exercising individual judgment?

Compare infant mortality and life expectancy between the U.S. and UK:

Infant Mortality and Life Expectancy for Selected Countries, 2007 — Infoplease.com

Seems like the U.K is doing just fine.

Rich
RDRDRD1
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 08:55 am
@Theaetetus,
The articles linked by hue-man give a reasonably accurate depiction of Canadian health care. Most of it is funded through taxes, a genuinely progressive tax system. And yes, we cherish our healthcare system and that includes the rich as well as the poor and everyone in between.

In my professional career I was in the upper tax brackets and, while it's human nature to grumble a bit about just about anything, few were truly outraged at the imposition. As a society, a community of citizens, the overwhelming majority of us want to know that the guy on the other side of town who's out of work can still get full medical care for everyone in his family. These things matter to us and they matter deeply.

The current conservative prime minister once berated our country as a "Northern European welfare state in the worst sense of the term." Oh how he ridiculed our universal health care system! Then one day it dawned on that silly bugger that his political prospects were damned close to zero if he challenged our health care system and somewhat below zero if he started pushing American-style healthcare. Suddenly he became remarkably progressive.

There are moments when one truly sees the government as a product of its society, as a mirror of the public will. This is a good example.

Some Americans find this thinking offensive, an unwarranted and unwelcome intrusion on their individuality. Relax. The Marlboro Man was just an advertising model. He's dead. The ciggies got him. Take inspiration instead from your great, 19th century jurist, Oliver Wendell Holmes. Taxes are what we pay for civilized society.
0 Replies
 
Aedes
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 11:28 am
@richrf,
richrf;68264 wrote:
People exercising individual judgment?
At the expense of others, considering measles and pertussis both come with considerable morbidity, mortality, and healthcare costs, and you need greater than 95% true immunity to measles to prevent epidemics. Just like when you're raising children, they don't always know what's good for themselves. If people's individual judgement is allowed to cause harm to public health, then there is a failure of the public health system -- and there's been no shortage of discussion about this crisis in the medical literature.

richrf;68264 wrote:
Compare infant mortality and life expectancy between the U.S. and UK
Both the US and the UK have highly heterogeneous populations, and these statistics are not uniform across populations, so I find that this kind of statistic is not that useful as a global measure of public health. The US has a terribly underserved fraction of our population, but there is a different fraction that has as good care and health outcomes as anyone in the world. Our problem is health disparities. The problem in many countries with national health services is global quality standards across the population.
richrf
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 12:58 pm
@Aedes,
Aedes;68302 wrote:
At the expense of others, considering measles and pertussis both come with considerable morbidity, mortality, and healthcare costs, and you need greater than 95% true immunity to measles to prevent epidemics. Just like when you're raising children, they don't always know what's good for themselves. If people's individual judgement is allowed to cause harm to public health, then there is a failure of the public health system -- and there's been no shortage of discussion about this crisis in the medical literature.

Both the US and the UK have highly heterogeneous populations, and these statistics are not uniform across populations, so I find that this kind of statistic is not that useful as a global measure of public health. The US has a terribly underserved fraction of our population, but there is a different fraction that has as good care and health outcomes as anyone in the world. Our problem is health disparities. The problem in many countries with national health services is global quality standards across the population.


One can make up all kinds of cases for and against vaccination laws. I merely wanted to point out, that on the whole, the UK seems to be making pretty decent decisions regarding their health practices.

BTW, if you are vaccinated, you have nothing to worry about. You are vaccinated - remember.

Rich
0 Replies
 
RDRDRD1
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 01:01 pm
@Theaetetus,
Well then Paul, compare infant mortality rates between the US and any other OECD country. From CNN in 2006:

American babies are three times more likely to die in their first month as children born in Japan, and newborn mortality is 2.5 times higher in the United States than in Finland, Iceland or Norway, Save the Children researchers found.

Only Latvia, with six deaths per 1,000 live births, has a higher death rate for newborns than the United States, which is tied near the bottom of industrialized nations with Hungary, Malta, Poland and Slovakia with five deaths per 1,000 births.

"The United States has more neonatologists and neonatal intensive care beds per person than Australia, Canada and the United Kingdom, but its newborn rate is higher than any of those countries," said the annual State of the World's Mothers report.

The report, which analyzed data from governments, research institutions and international agencies, found higher newborn death rates among U.S. minorities and disadvantaged groups. For African-Americans, the mortality rate is nearly double that of the United States as a whole, with 9.3 deaths per 1,000 births.
richrf
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 01:06 pm
@RDRDRD1,
RDRDRD1;68331 wrote:
Well then Paul, compare infant mortality rates between the US and any other OECD country. From CNN in 2006:

American babies are three times more likely to die in their first month as children born in Japan, and newborn mortality is 2.5 times higher in the United States than in Finland, Iceland or Norway, Save the Children researchers found.

Only Latvia, with six deaths per 1,000 live births, has a higher death rate for newborns than the United States, which is tied near the bottom of industrialized nations with Hungary, Malta, Poland and Slovakia with five deaths per 1,000 births.

"The United States has more neonatologists and neonatal intensive care beds per person than Australia, Canada and the United Kingdom, but its newborn rate is higher than any of those countries," said the annual State of the World's Mothers report.

The report, which analyzed data from governments, research institutions and international agencies, found higher newborn death rates among U.S. minorities and disadvantaged groups. For African-Americans, the mortality rate is nearly double that of the United States as a whole, with 9.3 deaths per 1,000 births.


Since I spend a lot of time studying health, health practices, and observing results (personal and from studies), I have come to my own personal conclusion that the U.S can learn a lot from health practices, of all types, as practiced in other cultures and countries.

Rich
0 Replies
 
BrightNoon
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 02:54 pm
@Aedes,
Aedes;67957 wrote:
Resources are finite and you have to make choices.


Who gets to make the choices? Call me crazy, but I don't think the government should literally decide who lives and who dies.

Quote:
The government will have control over payment, not over health care.


This made me laugh. When the government funds something, it controls it. Insurance companies control healthcare don't they? Isn't that one of the problems in our present system? What makes you think that that will change if the government becomes our insurer? What begins as 'free' healthcare could evolve such that certain procedures become mandatory, like mental heath screenings in order to own a gun e.g.
Holiday20310401
 
  1  
Reply Thu 11 Jun, 2009 03:43 pm
@BrightNoon,
I think Aedes is saying that the government has no control over the drugs administered. So the government isn't going to give a cheaper drug when a better more expensive one is required?
Didymos Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Jul, 2009 03:49 pm
@Holiday20310401,
BrightNoon;68356 wrote:
Who gets to make the choices? Call me crazy, but I don't think the government should literally decide who lives and who dies.


Better the government than an insurance company. If there is any group I trust less than the government....
0 Replies
 
RDRDRD1
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Jul, 2009 03:59 pm
@Theaetetus,
Ask yourself why your country spends far more than all others, per capita, on health care and yet has so many uninsured and so many more only partially insured. Find out what percentage of each healthcare dollar goes to administration and profit and contrast that to the percentage administration costs in publicly funded healthcare systems. Look at the American statistics for medical-care triggered bankruptcy and then look at how many of those who lost their homes and everything else had private medical insurance and believed themselves protected?

Just look ...please look. America is never going to be truly great again until you people start really caring for each other. You have so much to gain for such a minor cost. The world is changing and Americans, like all other nationalities, will find that their ability to act in unison and harmony for each other and for all will pay real dividends in difficult times.
0 Replies
 
gojo1978
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Jul, 2009 04:26 pm
@richrf,
richrf;67414 wrote:
Hi there,

While I appreciate your sentiments, I have a different story. I (and others in my family) have not spent a dime on orthodox health care (e.g. MDs, etc.) during the last 25 years. We eat well, we do our exercise, and we get our rest. Now, I have a simple problem, subsidizing the health of others, who choose to stuff their face with Big Macs and Kentucky Fried, while sitting in front of a boob tube or exchanging the latest gossip over Facebook.

It may end up that I will have to subsidize others obese habits, but I rather not.

Rich


That is a short-sighted and sanctimonious way of looking at this issue. We'll see how you feel when you or a member of your family are stricken with a serious chronic disease. Those words will haunt you.

So some people eat crap every day... yes, it's revolting and idiotic, but hey, they're humans, they're flawed. And so are you. Just because their flaw is eating junk doesn't make them any better or worse than you.


In other news, as has already been pointed out, running healthcare as a business is a non-runner. 100% conflict of interest between vendor and customer. In the American case, it's an anachronism. It's sticking way WAY too rigidly to the "every man for himself" ethos the country was set up in.

For the richest country in the world to fail to provide free healthcare to its citizens is utterly obscene.
richrf
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Jul, 2009 04:55 pm
@gojo1978,
gojo1978;79507 wrote:
That is a short-sighted and sanctimonious way of looking at this issue. We'll see how you feel when you or a member of your family are stricken with a serious chronic disease. Those words will haunt you.

So some people eat crap every day... yes, it's revolting and idiotic, but hey, they're humans, they're flawed. And so are you. Just because their flaw is eating junk doesn't make them any better or worse than you.


In other news, as has already been pointed out, running healthcare as a business is a non-runner. 100% conflict of interest between vendor and customer. In the American case, it's an anachronism. It's sticking way WAY too rigidly to the "every man for himself" ethos the country was set up in.

For the richest country in the world to fail to provide free healthcare to its citizens is utterly obscene.


On the contrary, I think it is very long-sighted. I prefer to see the health system go broke, as it rapidly is, as it continues to eat up all the wealth in our country. Medical expenditures now represents over 17% of our GDP which is an astronomical amount compared to other, healthier countries. Meanwhile. my expenditures are close to zero.

When the system goes bust (and it will), people are going to have to figure out how to care for themselves by eating health food, getting nice, moderate exercise (walking, stretching, etc), resting, and enjoying life. It is inevitable just like it was inevitable that the stock market would bust and the housing market with bust. Excess begets collapse, and we are pretty close to it right now in our medical system.

There are not nearly enough people available to pay for the excesses of the system - e.g. voluminous eating, sedentary lifestyle, lack of rest, and a medical industry that is more than happy to take advantage of it, just like the brokers took advantage of the illusory stock and housing booms.

Rich
0 Replies
 
Theaetetus
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Jul, 2009 06:20 pm
@Theaetetus,
Here is a question to help shape this debate. Should health care be a right as a citizen of a country? Why or why not?
RDRDRD1
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Jul, 2009 06:23 pm
@Theaetetus,
Rich, there are any number of catastrophic maladies that are not lifestyle-related. They range from a host of neurological and congenital disorders to freak accidents. That you have been spared any of these is purely fortuitous and it does you no credit to neglect the role sheer good luck has played in your family's current circumstances. As a parent, all it would take is one intrusion of fate in the health of a provider to devastate your entire family. Your boastfulness is beset with hubris.

And yes, in many countries the people do consider healthcare a right of all.
gojo1978
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Jul, 2009 07:05 pm
@Theaetetus,
Theaetetus;79520 wrote:
Here is a question to help shape this debate. Should health care be a right as a citizen of a country? Why or why not?


Yes.

Of course it should.

The 'state' expects, nay, demands you to work, pay tax on the earnings from that work, ideally breed in order to keep feeding the machine with fresh meat, all the while obeying the law, most of which is in place to protect the rich and maintain the grossly unequal status quo, but then turns its back on you in your hour of need? You bet your ass it should be a right!

There is more than enough money in the world to look after everyone's health, and more than enough food in the world to eradicate hunger. That neither of these things are the case is a disgrace to humanity.

I realise that last bit addresses the issue on a more global scale, but we can just, in general, treat each country as a microcosm of that.

---------- Post added 07-26-2009 at 02:06 AM ----------

RDRDRD1;79522 wrote:
As a parent, all it would take is one intrusion of fate in the health of a provider to devastate your entire family. Your boastfulness is beset with hubris.


Very well put. :a-ok:
0 Replies
 
richrf
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Jul, 2009 08:00 pm
@RDRDRD1,
RDRDRD1;79522 wrote:
Rich, there are any number of catastrophic maladies that are not lifestyle-related. They range from a host of neurological and congenital disorders to freak accidents. That you have been spared any of these is purely fortuitous and it does you no credit to neglect the role sheer good luck has played in your family's current circumstances. As a parent, all it would take is one intrusion of fate in the health of a provider to devastate your entire family. Your boastfulness is beset with hubris.

And yes, in many countries the people do consider healthcare a right of all.


Sorry. This country is totally obese. Everyone literally wants to have their cake and eat it, and eat it, and eat it, and eat it. And then they want someone else to pay for it. I would rather not.

The U.S. expenditure on medical costs per capital is as obese as its appetite (you can look it up) and there are no measurable life expectancy benefits, though there are some people who are getting awfully rich.

The World Health Organization completed an extensive study and analysis and concluded that over 85% of all chronic health problems are lifestyle related.

I really don't care what people do with their lives or their bodies. But I really don't want to pay for it. However, anyone who wants to participate in the insurance game should be free to do so. But as you can tell, there isn't enough money to pay for it all.

Rich

---------- Post added 07-25-2009 at 09:03 PM ----------

RDRDRD1;79522 wrote:
Rich, there are any number of catastrophic maladies that are not lifestyle-related. They range from a host of neurological and congenital disorders to freak accidents. That you have been spared any of these is purely fortuitous and it does you no credit to neglect the role sheer good luck has played in your family's current circumstances. As a parent, all it would take is one intrusion of fate in the health of a provider to devastate your entire family. Your boastfulness is beset with hubris.

And yes, in many countries the people do consider healthcare a right of all.


Forget about the luck thing. It is quite clear now that lifestyle habits are the primary cause of chronic illness. But people don't care and neither does the insurance or medical profession.

However, it is no matter to me. My family is healthy and we never go to the doctors. If you like going, please feel free. But it is not free, so figure out how to pay for it. Just don't ask me to pay for it. I am using my money to maintain my good health by buying fresh vegetables and fruit instead of Big Macs.

Rich
0 Replies
 
RDRDRD1
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Jul, 2009 08:54 pm
@Theaetetus,
No one suggested it is free. How that crept into your head is beyond me. Yet in that misapprehension there's a thread of the surreal that runs through your logic. Pray tell, what do you intend to do if one of your children should be so unfortunate as to fall from a tree and suffer a major spinal injury? Would you be content to exhaust your assets and resources on surgeries, hospitalization and rehab and then, but part way through, have your child and your family left to fend for yourselves without care?

Perhaps because you're so distantly acquainted with the healthcare professional you fail to grasp the role they play in preventative medicine and the real and substantial economic benefit that affords society.

Your grasp of facts is wilfully myopic. Quick, back under your basket.
richrf
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Jul, 2009 10:25 pm
@RDRDRD1,
RDRDRD1;79548 wrote:
No one suggested it is free. How that crept into your head is beyond me. Yet in that misapprehension there's a thread of the surreal that runs through your logic. Pray tell, what do you intend to do if one of your children should be so unfortunate as to fall from a tree and suffer a major spinal injury?


Well, I guess I will just have to take care of one of my children should that happen. I haven't paid for insurance in 30 years. That means I have probably saved about $600,000 when principal and compounded interest are taken into account. So, don't worry about me. It just means that the insurance company doesn't have $600,000 of my money, I have it, and I don't have to worry about them denying benefits.

Quote:
Would you be content to exhaust your assets and resources on surgeries, hospitalization and rehab and then, but part way through, have your child and your family left to fend for yourselves without care?
There is no reason to worry about me or to use those scare tactics that are so much part of this system. The fact is that the vast, vast amount of the money spent in our medical system is going towards treating lifestyle issues, unnecessary and incredibly expensive procedures, huge profits, and fantastic provider lifestyle needs. I would rather my money go to some more worthwhile cause.

Quote:
Perhaps because you're so distantly acquainted with the healthcare professional you fail to grasp the role they play in preventative medicine and the real and substantial economic benefit that affords society.
lol. I know lots of people in the health care field. Most of them are much younger than me, are in terrible health from all of the drugs they take and the cigarettes they smoke, and in no way am I going to take any advice from people that are in such poor health condition. It is surreal for obese, cigarette smoking people who never exercise, to think that they are in a position to give any kind of advice to anyone.

BTW, did you have take a look at the junk food that they serve in hospitals to the patients and staff. Pudding, Coke, french fries, burgers, cake, ... it is a great metaphor for the care that they are providing.

Quote:
Your grasp of facts is wilfully myopic. Quick, back under your basket.
The system is going bust just like the other excesses in our society and people will just have to learn to live with less fat in their bodies.

Rich
RDRDRD1
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Jul, 2009 10:49 pm
@Theaetetus,
Well Rich, if you genuinely have that $600,000 you claim to have saved in foregone insurance premiums, you've rolled the die and won. And what of all the non-obese types you so obsess about who haven't won but who have lost?

It's lamentable that "most" of your healthcare professionals are drug and tobacco addicted as you assert. Curious how these disagreements almost inevitably drift into magical thinking of this sort.

BTW, to what sterling purpose are you putting that $600,000?
Didymos Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Sat 25 Jul, 2009 11:07 pm
@RDRDRD1,
People get ill, deathly sick, even when they do take care of themselves, rich. Lifestyle is critically important, but living right does not eliminate health problems. People still need healthcare.

Why you are too greedy to pay taxes to help your neighbor, your family, and probably yourself is beyond me. You have taken one example, yourself, and extrapolated from there. Yet, you still have many years to live (we pray). What do you do tomorrow if you have cancer? Unless you have been storing that 600 grand in your mattress, you might find yourself in desperate need of insurance.

And consider the poor, who are more likely to have less healthy lifestyles, particularly because good food is expensive! Why not help them by at least providing medical care? That would certainly be better than the status quo.
0 Replies
 
 

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