Americans spend more money on health care because prices are higher here than anywhere else in the world. Our system is fraught with waste, our providers (physicians and hospitals) are paid more; and goods like biopharmaceuticals and medical devices are more expensive. On average, U.S. hospital prices are 60 percent higher than countries in Europe and physicians make twice as much as their counterparts in other advanced countries.
But despite spending almost a fifth of the U.S. economy on health care, Americans have no better outcomes (often worse) than other advanced countries. But as long as we are spending so much on health-care services, we don’t have enough funding to go after other upstream solutions to improve health outcomes — things like housing, environment, education and diet, all of which impact a person’s health status.
Read Arielle’s full op-ed by clicking here.