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A Swiss model for U.S. healthcare?

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In this JAMA Viewpoint, David Blumenthal M.D., discusses what can realistically be expected from the U.S. healthcare system and how the nation achieve it. Among his observations:

“Despite areas of excellence, the United States healthcare system could perform much better than it does. The key questions: what can realistically be expected, and how can the nation get there?

“To set expectations, real-world examples are helpful. Cross-national comparisons show that if the U.S. healthcare system performed like systems in other Western democracies, individuals would live longer lives and spend less, and the United States could provide universal access to care. As just one example, if healthcare costs in the United States had increased since 1980 at the rate of healthcare costs in Switzerland, where all citizens purchase private insurance from competing plans, an estimated $15.9 trillion dollars could have been saved—nearly enough to retire the U.S. national debt.”

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