You can’t buy time – except, it seems, in America.
Increasing inequality means wealthy Americans can now expect to live up to 15 years longer than their poor counterparts, reports in the British medical journal the Lancet have found.
Researchers said these disparities appear to be worsened by the American health system itself, which relies on for-profit insurance companies, and is the most expensive in the world.
Their conclusion? Treat healthcare as a human right.
“Healthcare is not a commodity,” wrote US Senator Bernie Sanders in an opinion article introducing the issue of the journal, which is devoted to inequality in American healthcare. “The goal of a healthcare system should be to keep people well, not to make stockholders rich. The USA has the most expensive, bureaucratic, wasteful, and ineffective healthcare system in the world.”
Sanders, like authors of the lead report, called for single-payer health insurance or what Americans might know as “Medicare for all”, a reference to an existing public health program for older Americans.
An actual consideration of health care financing systems would be useful of course. But I doubt the Singapore system gets a look in, does it?