Statist health care, by the numbers
posted at 6:15 pm on July 6, 2009 by directorblue
13: The number of teeth that British veteran Ian Boynton pulled out himself with pliers “because he couldn’t find an NHS (National Health Service) dentist… [he] could not afford to go private for treatment so instead took the drastic action to remove 13 of his teeth that were giving him severe pain.”
14: The percentage of all patients in Britain who wait more than one (1) year to receive treatment after a referral by a general practitioner. Half of all National Health Care patients in Britain wait between 18 and 52 weeks for treatment.
37: The “health care ranking” assigned to the U.S. by the World Health Organization among the world’s countries. This oft-quoted number is used to justify an overhaul of the U.S. health care system and lists countries like Italy (2), Andorra (4), Malta (5), Singapore (6), Oman (8), Portugal (12), Greece (14), the United Kingdom (18), Ireland (19), Columbia (22), Cyprus (24), Saudi Arabia (26), the UAE (27), Morocco (29), Canada (30), Chile (33), the Dominican Republic (35) and Costa Rica (36) ahead of the U.S. Considering that no U.S. citizens travel to these countries when experiencing a life-threatening situation, it’s worth questioning the methods by which the WHO arrived at these rankings. Their criteria included subjective and political assessments such as “Fairness in financial contribution“. Suffice it to say that the WHO’s rankings are clearly fraudulent and are designed to influence U.S. policy.
60: Average cancer survival rate (all types) for patients in the United States. Canada’s survival rate is significantly lower at 55%, while Europe’s is a dismal 48%.
81: Average percentage of those who survive a diagnosis of prostate cancer in the United States versus 43% in Britain under their National Health Service.
90: Number of days, on average, each Canadian patient must wait for an MRI under the Canadian government-run health care system.
2050: By this year, “Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid (health care for the poor) will consume nearly the entire federal budget.” And by 2082, Medicare spending alone will consume the entire federal budget. This trajectory is, quite obviously, unsustainable for our children and our grandchildren. Congress is bequeathing our descendents a bankrupt health care system — for just the third of the medical system that the government already runs!
10,000: Number of Canadian breast cancer patients to file a class action lawsuit against Quebec’s hospitals because, on average, they were forced to wait 60 days to begin post-operative radiation treatments.
280,392: The number of jobs that employers would shed if government levied an employer mandate, requiring them to insure all employees. A 2007 study by Katherine Baicker of Harvard University and Helen Levy of the University of Michigan (“Employer Health Insurance Mandates and the Risk of Unemployment“) found that “0.2 percent of all full-time workers and 1.4 percent of uninsured full-time workers would lose their jobs if a health insurance mandate were written into law. Workers who would lose their jobs are disproportionately likely to be high school dropouts, minority, and female.”
443,849: The number of British patients of the National Healthcare Service (NHS) who waited four or more weeks for inpatient admittance into a hospital (Excel file) in May of 2009 (more than 75% of all patients).
1,500,000: The number of Canadians who do not have — and cannot find — a general practitioner/primary care physician due to shortages in medical staff: “In Norwood, Ontario, 20/20 videotaped a town clerk pulling the names of the lucky winners out of a lottery box. The losers must wait to see a doctor… Shirley Healy, like many sick Canadians, came to America for surgery. Her doctor in British Columbia told her she had only a few weeks to live because a blocked artery kept her from digesting food. Yet Canadian officials called her surgery ‘elective.’ …’The only thing elective about this surgery was I elected to live,’ she said.”
12,000,000: number of illegal immigrants who would qualify for free health care and — in all likelihood — additional health care rights for relatives under the Democrats’ universal health care plan, according to a reported statement by the office of Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) and spokespeople for the racial separatist group La Raza.
$311,000,000 ($311 million): The amount of additional funding requested last month by the Obama administration simply to combat Medicare fraud. Medicare fraud is estimated at $60 billion annually.
$3,600,000,000 ($3.6 billion): The amount of added malpractice insurance costs to the current health care system instigated by an out-of-control trial lawyer lobby that donates heavily to Democrat causes.
$10,000,000,000 ($10 billion): The estimated amount of Medicaid fraud, based upon FBI estimates. Criminal practices include billing for nonexistent, overstated, or unnecessary services, kickbacks to patients, inflated costs, etc.
$60,000,000,000 ($60 billion): The estimated annual amount of Medicare fraud, due to widespread criminal operations that victimize taxpayers and specialize in dead doctors, fake patients, non-existent treatments and the like.
$107,000,000,000,000 ($107 trillion): The estimated shortfall of the Medicare and Social Security programs, which are utterly and completely bankrupt; they can be legitimately called an “enormous version of Bernard Madoff’s Ponzi scheme”.
Canada and England don’t pay as high a price for their health care because they freeload on American innovation. If we utilized their systems, Americans might worry less about paying for health care, but we’d get 2009-level care and long lines. Those are the immutable laws of supply and demand. Government monopolies don’t innovate. Only the free market innovates.
Furthermore, government bureaucrats already raped the Social Security Trust Fund — there is no trust fund. They raped the Medicare Trust Fund — there’s nothing left. They raped the Highway Trust Fund — it’s empty. I could go down a long list of things the government said it would do, but hasn’t done. Because the big government statists are liars. They even moved these massive expenditures “off the books” to conceal the damage they’ve done.
And now the Democrat Party, the union bosses and the trial lawyers are launching the most massive attack on the American people in the history of government.
They promise health care for everyone, but they will not — and they can’t possibly — deliver it. The numbers don’t lie.
References: Sick in America: ‘Free’ Is Good? (ABC News), There’s no such thing as free health care (Reason Magazine), Social Security and Medicare Projections: 2009 (National Center for Policy Analysis), Who is Debby Smith?, E.R. P.R., Bureau of Labor Statistics, July 2009.
Cross-posted at: Doug Ross @ Journal.