Wealth Inequality and 335,000 Preventable US Covid Related Deaths Caused by our Market Driven Healthcare System.
Tonight, our show focus is on our healthcare system, a system that was unmasked by its response to the Covid 19 pandemic. We demonstrate that a substantial component of the disparity between mortality from COVID-19 in the US and other affluent countries is due to our healthcare system and the significant share of the US population whom are underinsures orare without health insurance.
Joining Bringing Light Into Darkness tonight is Dr James G. Kahn, emeritus professor of health policy, University of California San Francisco. Leading researcher in the cost and effectiveness of health intervention programs, and in US health care financing reform. He is the Editor and primary blogger, Health Justice Monitor. A new study, published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA, has found that between the beginning of the pandemic until mid-March 2022, universal health care could have saved more than 338,000 US lives from Covid-19. The study also calculated that $105.6 billion could have been saved in health care costs associated with Covid hospitalizations. The study demonstrates that a significant share of Covid mortality in the U.S. is “due to our reliance on a system of market-driven health care.” The result is compared to other OECD nations. Our healthcare is underperforming in every measurable except one – profiteering, a result of a health system that prioritizes profits over people, particularly poor people. Skipping and delaying seeking healthcare for financial reasons is a feature of our system while we reveal that other developed nations pay less some 50% less yet their population lives longer.
Medical debt afflicts 40% of US adults in the US while 25-30 million are uninsured and our number of underinsured is growing each year. This is a problem that that can be fixed as evidenced by dozens of advanced countries that have.