Canada v. U.S. on Health Care

by on October 3, 2007 at 7:08 am in Economics, Medicine | Permalink

Jason Shafrin, the Healthcare Economist, has a good review of the O’Neil and O’Neil NBER working paper, Health Status, Health Care and Inequality: Canada vs. the U.S.  (This paper was also mentioned by Tyler recently).

American are less healthy than Canadians. What this paper finds, however, is
that this is mainly due to the fact that the U.S. has a higher incidence of
disease. It turns out that Americans may have slightly higher access to
treatment than Canadians.

Read the full review.  Of course, the Canadian system is cheaper but very few people are willing to lobby for less health care.

different jeff October 3, 2007 at 7:57 am

Here’s a couple sentences from that paper:

“The U.S. health care system is often critiqued by noting that health expenditures in the U.S. are the highest among the OECD countries—twice as high on a per capita basis as Canada’s”

and

“Briefly, our findings are: No significant differences are evident in the four health status indicators available in the JCUSH data.”

Alex Tabarrok October 3, 2007 at 9:40 am

The first job of a student of economics is to read more. :) From the review, “Probably the most surprising discovery of the paper was that Americans partake in more preventative care than Canadians.”

jsalvati October 3, 2007 at 12:30 pm

I would like to see a study based on displaced or traveling Americans (to Canada) to see if that disease rate difference remains.

G October 3, 2007 at 10:47 pm

Why do people see the need to compare the USA’s health care systems to others as though they are comparing a market-based approach to a socialized system? America’s health care is very far from a free market. Is there really anyone who thinks that forcing employers to provide health care, essentially forcing managed care on the population, is a good thing? We’ve got central planning without the state owning the means of production, but its still central planning. Could it be the worst of all worlds?

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