The Commonwealth Fund, a private foundation for better health care and research, came out with their 2010 annual comparison of the U.S. health care system to that in other industrialized nations. Not surprisingly, The United States didn’t rank highly: Compared to Australia, Canada, Germany, the Netherlands, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom, the United States spent the most money and had the lowest ranking quality, access, and equity of care, as well as the lowest likelihood of living long, healthy lives.
Disturbing? We think so. The U.S. didn’t spend just a little more than those other countries: We spent a lot more. Though the data isn’t current within the year, most of it comes from within the past ten years, so for a snapshot view of what health care looks like across the world’s developed nations, we don’t doubt that this is a good approximation.