US RANKED LAST ON SCORECARD OF HEALTH CARE SYSTEMS
For the past 10 years, the United States’ healthcare system has been ranked as the most expensive and least effective among 10 other western, industrialized nations. The U.S. spent thousands of dollars more per capita than the #1 country, the United Kingdom, but still had worse outcomes for patients. The authors of the study are hopeful that the Affordable Care Act will boost America’s ratings, but will it be enough to bring us ahead of nations that have had their healthcare systems in order for decades? As more and more health issues like obesity, cancer, diabetes and aging-related illnesses become epidemics in the U.S., the demand for quality health care increases and our hospitals and doctors must have the tools they need to respond. However, in order to create a better healthcare system, we must also get to the root of the problem, which lies in the inequalities faced by minority and low-income Americans on a daily basis. Here at the Health Gap, we address those disparities by battling obesity and focusing on advocacy, education, and prevention as the keys to keeping people healthy, rather than treating their illnesses when they have progressed too far. By following a similar model, maybe America can gain both a higher ranking and a healthier population.