U.S. Healthcare - Dead Last Again
The United States ranked last when compared to six other countries -- Britain, Canada, Germany, Netherlands, Australia and New Zealand, the Commonwealth Fund report found.
In 2007, health spending was $7,290 per person in the United States, more than double that of any other country in the survey.
Australians spent $3,357, Canadians $3,895, Germans $3,588, the Netherlands $3,837 and Britons spent $2,992 per capita on health in 2007. New Zealand spent the least at $2,454.
According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, health care costs accounted for just 9.5% of all personal consumption back in 1980. Today they account for approximately 16.3%.
Over the past decade, health insurance premiums have risen three times faster than wages have in the United States.
Even as the rest of the country struggled with a deep recession, U.S. health insurance companies increased their profits by 56 percent during 2009 alone.
Since 2003, health insurance companies have shelled out more than $42 million in state-level campaign contributions.
According to the CDC, approximately three quarters of a million people a year are rushed to emergency rooms in the United States because of adverse reactions to pharmaceutical drugs.
According to the CIA World Factbook, the United States had a higher infant mortality rate than 45 other nations in 2009.
It is estimated that hospitals overcharge Americans by about 10 billion dollars every single year.
In fact, one trained medical billing advocate says that over 90 percent of all the medical bills that she has audited contain "gross overcharges".
Prescription drugs cost about 50% more in the United States than they do in other countries.
According to a report by Health Care for America Now, America's five biggest for-profit health insurance companies ended 2009 with a combined profit of $12.2 billion.