Ten leading indicators of American health-care superiority

Via Jonah Goldberg at The Corner, Hoover Institute’s Scott Atlas outlines ten facts you’ve probably not been told in the debate over health-care reform.  While nationalization advocates proclaim falling skies and health-care disasters (and propose massive expansion of real economic catastrophes as a cure-all), the chief of neuroradiology at Stanford University Medical School gives a list of ten comparisons to remember as the debate continues:

  1. Americans have better survival rates than Europeans for common cancers.
  2. Americans have lower cancer mortality rates than Canadians.
  3. Americans have better access to treatment for chronic diseases than patients in other developed countries.
  4. Americans have better access to preventive cancer screening than Canadians.
  5. Lower-income Americans are in better health than comparable Canadians.
  6. Americans spend less time waiting for care than patients in Canada and the United Kingdom.
  7. People in countries with more government control of health care are highly dissatisfied and believe reform is needed.
  8. Americans are more satisfied with the care they receive than Canadians.
  9. Americans have better access to important new technologies such as medical imaging than do patients in Canada or Britain.
  10. Americans are responsible for the vast majority of all health care innovations.

Be sure to read the supporting arguments in each; they’re eye-openers.  American men who have had good access to prostate-cancer screening may wonder why Canadian men are three times less likely to get the PSA antigen test.  For that matter, everyone may ask why Americans are six times more likely to have important colonoscopy testing than our northern neighbors.

Our system isn’t perfect, but if we want to fix it, let’s fix the real problems instead of breaking what works.