I’m going to classify this under both Saturn (making the hard choices) in Virgo (dealing with day to day life in a body such as health, diet and routines), as well as Pluto (transformation) in Capricorn (the way our governmental structures operate). The fact is, we need a complete overhaul with the way we look at health and healthcare, and not just the way we insure our health. Offering a public option for health insurance is not enough.
The fact is that the health care in the United States makes us sicker than people in other countries. Despite the recent slam of the British healthcare system by the conservative press, a 2006 study in the showed that more Americans suffer from chronic diseases than their counterparts in England. According to this study, Americans spend $5274 per year per person on health care as opposed to $2164 in the UK, yet there are twice as many Americans with diabetes as Brits, and Americans have a higher rate of heart attacks, strokes, lung disease and cancer.
Last year a book was released by journalist Shannon Brownlee called Overtreated–why too much medicine is making us sicker and poorer. Ms. Brownlee draws from the work of , who with his team from Dartmouth over the past forty years has proven that wealthier parts of the country spent more on health care, but were not any healthier. Wennberg’s colleague Elliot Fisher demonstrated in 2000 that people in areas that spent more on health care were dying at a higher rate. They were not getting more surgery; they were getting more tests, more pharmaceuticals and more unnecessary procedures. Fisher determined that the 2-6% increase in deaths was directly attributed to more […]