Another study was released showing that the US ranks last of industrialized nations for quality of and access to health care.
The US health care system ranks last among other major rich countries for quality, access and efficiency, according to two studies released Tuesday by a health care think tank.
The studies by the Commonwealth Fund found that the United States, which has the most expensive health system in the world, underperforms consistently relative to other countries and differs most notably in the fact that Americans have no universal health insurance coverage.
[...]The US ranked last in most areas, including access to health care, patient safety, timeliness of care, efficiency and equity. Americans were also last in terms of whether they had a regular physician.
“The US spends twice what the average industrialized country spends on health care but we’re clearly not getting value for the money,” Davis told AFP.
How does one respond to this? We, as a country, suck at taking care of our people. Period. Take a look at the summary of the report:
The findings indicate room for improvement across all of the countries, especially in the U.S. If the health care system is to perform according to patients' expectations, the nation will need to remove financial barriers to care and improve the delivery of care. Disparities in terms of access to services signal the need to expand insurance to cover the uninsured and to ensure that all Americans have an accessible medical home. The U.S. must also accelerate its efforts to adopt health information technology and ensure an integrated medical record and information system that is accessible to providers and patients.
While many U.S. hospitals and health systems are dedicated to improving the process of care to achieve better safety and quality, the U.S. can also learn from innovations in other countries—including public reporting of quality data, payment systems that reward high-quality care, and a team approach to management of chronic conditions. Based on these patient and physician reports, the U.S. could improve the delivery, coordination, and equity of the health care system by drawing from best practices both within the U.S. and around the world.
That would be a good start if we could implement these suggestions.