2. America Sucks Because We Can’t Fix Our Health Care System Like France, Denmark, & England
A few weeks before the 2008 presidential election, celebrated health care policy wonk Joy Behar channeled Michael Moore to outline her ingenious one-point plan for reforming the American health care system:
What they haven’t discussed in any of these debates is how other countries have solved this. France has solved it, Denmark has solved it, England has solved it. Why can’t we solve it? [applause] It’s ridiculous.
Omigosh, why didn’t Joy run for president? Better yet, why didn’t she just draft Hollywood’s favorite multi-millionaire neo-communist documentarian to run for the highest office in the land? With all those public policy lessons learned while filming “Sicko,” Michael Moore could’ve overhauled the health care system and still had plenty of time left over to topple capitalism.
But gee, maybe Joy does have a point. They’re awful sophisticated across that there pond. (Cue the banjo music.) Take the French, for example. They have wine. And stinky cheese. And berets!
Oh, and don’t tell anyone, but they’re looking to the filthy American swine for ideas on health care reform. Last year the Wall Street Journal reported:
As Congress fights over whether America should be more like France, the French government is trying to borrow U.S. tactics.
In recent months, France imposed American-style “co-pays” on patients to try to throttle back prescription-drug costs and forced state hospitals to crack down on expenses.
That brilliant French model of universal health care has been operating in the red since 1989. Their solution was to kick the can as far down the road as possible. And now, their fragile health care system is buckling under the weight of unsustainable entitlement programs and social welfare benefits are being slashed. Hence, the enthusiastic protests (read: violent street riots) taking place across the country.
In ever so ideal Denmark, lucky citizens pay the highest tax rates in the world and enjoy below-average life expectancy compared with the rest of Europe. Health care solved!
And do we really need to recount the horror stories coming out of Joy’s beloved United Kingdom? Like the practice of “patient-stacking“:
Seriously ill patients are being kept in ambulances outside hospitals for hours so NHS trusts do not miss Government targets.
Or the clever way the NHS deals with a shortage of anesthetists when pregnant women seek epidurals to ease the pain of labor:
Hundreds of British women are being denied epidurals to numb the pain of childbirth because there aren’t enough anesthetists to go around, and this has been going on for at least three years.
And why wouldn’t the British solution to dental care be the envy of every American?
Some English people have resorted to pulling out their own teeth because they cannot find — or cannot afford — a dentist, a major study has revealed.
Six percent of those questioned in a survey of 5,000 patients admitted they had resorted to self-treatment using pliers and glue, the UK’s Press Association reported.
Breast cancer mortality rates are 88 percent higher in the UK than they are in the United States, and British patients wait twice as long to see a specialist. So why wouldn’t Joy “The Brain” Behar want a heaping serving of what they’re having?