US athletes are now showing their mettle, competing against the world
in the Beijing Summer Olympics. Since the modern summer Olympics began
in 1896, the US has been a force; consistently fielding a dominant
cadre of athletes and ranking first, or among the top, in the overall medal count.
In the spirit of competition and international comparison, this
Stateside Dispatch will look at how well our health care system stacks
up against our peers in the international community.
We spend substantially more per
person than any other country on health care, yet the World Health Organization ranked our health care system
37th in the world in 2000. We spend more, but we get less. In fact, the US
ranked 42nd in life expectancy in 2007.
the quality of care, reducing public health hazards, and eliminating
disparities in health care access will not only improve health and our standard
of living, it will reduce health care costs and wasteful spending. This section offers numerous options state lawmakers have to achieve these fundamental necessities.
Everyone knows that individuals and small employers face crushing
health insurance costs when they try to buy coverage on their own. But
state legislators in Hartford are about to take a simple yet
far-reaching step to address the problem.
By allowing municipalities and small businesses to buy into the
group plan currently provided to state employees, the recently
introduced Connecticut Healthcare Partnership would give working
families the clout they need to negotiate a better deal for health
Some health care reformers may recall that in 1994 the makers of Sim-City produced a Sim-Health computer program. The program, labeled by some as the "dryest"
simulation game ever made, allowed users to take control of the US
health care system and observe the results of their decisions. Now,
taking a similar yet more user-friendly approach, Community Catalyst and Families USA have teamed up to provide health care advocates with a web-based guide for developing state expansions of health coverage.