Health Myth #8: “Nationalized health care would not impact patient waiting times.”

This is the eighth in a series of commonly believed health myths based upon the research from Fox News analyst James Farrell. And, it’s very interesting to me to hear those in favor of any form of nationalized health insurance (especially “Obamacare”) state that the issue of waiting for care in countries with nationalized health care is a “myth.” Here is just one fact for your and their consideration.

More Information:

Waiting time for elective surgery is lower in the US than in countries with nationalized health care.

In fact, in 2005, only 8% of U.S. patients reported waiting four months or more for elective surgery.

Countries with nationalized health care ALL had higher percentages with waiting times of four months or more, including:

  • Australia (19%);
  • New Zealand (20%);
  • Canada (33%); and
  • the United Kingdom (41%).
Is this the type of care American’s really want?

Source: Commonwealth Fund, “MIRROR, MIRROR ON THE WALL: AN INTERNATIONAL UPDATE ON THE COMPARATIVE PERFORMANCE OF AMERICAN HEALTH CARE,” by Karen Davis, Cathy Schoen, Stephen C. Schoenbaum, Michelle M. Doty, Alyssa L. Holmgren, Jennifer L. Kriss, and Katherine K. Shea, May 2007.

Here are the topics for the entire series:

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    1 Response to Health Myth #8: “Nationalized health care would not impact patient waiting times.”

    1. Lenoxus says:

      Um, so your argument is based on the waiting times in the specific area of *elective surgery*? The… heck? I mean, of *course* elective surgery can be acquired more quickly in a private system than a public one — because it’s elective, and thus logically considered a lower priority in a nationalized system.

      Anyway, the actual study chosen was a strange choice for this page. Its abstract, summarizing its findings, begins, “Despite having the most costly health care system in the world, the United States consistently underperforms on most dimensions of performance, relative to other countries.” I mean, the study could very well be biased (in which case, why the heck did you choose it?), but that aside, the question is: Why the heck did you choose it?

      More from the study: “The US and Canada rank lowest on the prompt accessibility of appointments with physicians.” Think about that in light of the existence of all those other countries the paper looked at. Canada could very well be the worst in that area, but our being second-worst doesn’t make us the winner.

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