Why are 37 countries ranked as having better health care than we do?For those unfamiliar with this factoid, it arose from a study, World Health Report 2000, produced by the World Heath Organization (WHO) of the United Nations.
Of course this is a conclusion favorable to those who wish to use it to push for health
But that is not the point that is arousing my Pascal fervor today. The instinct that is reflected by the title of this thread -- self preservation -- is driving me. Are you listening troll?
When looking at the study, one finds that five factors went into WHO's calculation:The choices and definitions of the weighting factors clearly have a qualitative bias in them. That means someone, or most likely a select group of someones, chose the factors and decided what weight to assign to them. Of course that has provoked controversy. Yet that also is not my point today.
- Health level, as defined by a measure of life expectancy, which shows how healthy a country's population is. This factor gets a 25 percent weight.
- Responsiveness, which includes factors such as speed of health services, privacy protections, choice of doctors and quality of amenities. This factor gets a 12.5 percent weight.
- Financial fairness, which measures how progressive or regressive the financing of a country's health care system is — that is, whether or not the financial burdens are borne by those who are economically better off. This factor receives a 25 percent weight.
- Health distribution, which measures how equally a nation's health care resources are allocated among the population. This factor receives a 25 percent weight.
- Responsiveness distribution, which measures how equally a nation's health care responsiveness (which we defined above) is spread through society. This factor gets a 12.5 percent weight.
To advance the cause of self preservation, I am highlighting a single point that was raised by PolitiFact.com:
For instance, judged on responsiveness alone, the United States ranked No. 1 in the world.What I am suggesting is that if you understand how health care and insurance operates in the United States, and if you make provisions to address what it takes, it means that you can get the quickest and most certain care here -- in the United States -- as it now stands.
That seems to me to inhere the essential aspect of "self-preservation." No third party can currently get between you and your chosen solution. Your healthcare provider is free to say: "the color of your money looks fine to me."
Are there other issues currently in play? Yes. But has self preservation always been your goal? That means you are not now a johnny-come-lately to that realization and are not now demanding others pay for you squandering your earlier opportunities to make proper arrangements. Then one happy circumstance remains true. It is even now true for emergency room care even if you were a foolish youngster. And it even is true if you are an illegal alien. That is, for the most part, you are in the number one place on the planet to get a quick response in your moment of need.
Key word: SELF Preservation.
Oh, and one more observation and a question for my readers below the fold.