My question to you is do you believe that either of the discussed healthcare systems are performing/providing the services as they are intended in an efficient and beneficial way to the patient - and I mean all patients not just those that can afford to pay twice? (I get that my question has multiple parts so feel free to answer each separately if you like - or not at all).
Ill answer assuming where considering a good patient as an example and I'll say yes. Both efficient and beneficial. The waiting list times are getting worse in all the countries I previously mentioned for different reasons (medical and nursing shortages, defunding seeking deficit zero on the year's balance, general brexit-related BS, etc) and obviously having the money to see a private consultant doesn't suck, but assuming normal funding and normal waiting periods for patients who see their GP/family physician regularly or as soon as signs/symptoms present, yes.
And the fact that this is the same regardless of making minimum wage (600â‚¬/mo. or less, in some cases) or 10x that, helps.
I always dislike these discussions of "healthcare in the US is so much worse than X country but you spend X amount more". Comparing healthcare across nations is the classic apples to oranges rather than apples to apples.
- the US population is the most obese in the entire civilized world. This greatly affects the rates of hypertension, diabetes, heart surgeries, etc compared to other, less obese nations. This is a problem of the population but greatly contributes to the costs of US healthcare
- the costs of pharmaceuticals in the US cannot be negotiated therefore our drug prices are automatically higher than almost every other country in the world
- we have a large population (close to 350 million) that is NOT homogenous..........we have many different races/cultures. This, by itself, would make a comparison between the US and, lets say, Denmark a difficult comparison .
- the US overuses both MRI and CT scanners to a much higher degree than almost every other country in the world. This is not because we are sicker, it is to cover for the potential for lawsuits (malpractice defense). Most of these other countries do not have anywhere near the malpractice worries of US docs, and it certainly adds a lot of expense to patient care. I admit I do it myself. I have, and will, order extra labs, or MRI, or angiograms if it can provide protection for me down the road if I ever have to stand in front of a jury. Its a lot easier to order these extra items than to try and defend yourself in front of a lawyer saying "so Dr X, all you had to do was order this simple MRI and you could have found the tumor to save Jimmy's life. But no, you wanted to save money and now Jimmy is dead".
- higher rate of teen pregnancies in the US, and thus, higher infant mortality. Also, the way infant mortality is classified varies from one country to the next so, again, a somewhat apples to oranges comparison here as well
- the US healthcare system, in comparison, has a huge administrative burden (costs) compared to other countries. This goes back to the interference from healthcare insurance companies, as well as the bureaucracy of our already present government run systems (Medicaid, Medicare, VA Healthcare). This is certainly one area where a single payer system would be cheaper to administer
I'm sure there are more but these are the only ones I can think of right now. Quit comparing the overall system and compare your individual experience. if a person is happy with the care they receive in the UK or Canada then that means that system is working for THAT person. Same with the US patient. There will always be people happy with their system, and people unhappy with their system. Unfortunately, no one system is the best and it will be nearly impossible to ever do a true head to head comparison.