Health

The U.S. Falls Far Behind When it Comes to Healthcare

A new study finds we rank last in developed countries

The United States is one of the richest countries in the world, but when it comes to health, we rank last among developed nations. What's up with that?

In a survey by the Commonwealth Fund of the 11 most developed nations, the United Kingdom and Switzerland came in one and two, respectively. But the United States got poor scores when it came to several measures related to healthy living, including infant mortality and life expectancy. The U.S. was also outranked when it came to preventative care and access to specialists; access to services and access to primary care physicians.

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So what do these other countries have that the U.S. doesn't? Well, universal health care, for one. "Other nations ensure the accessibility of care through universal health systems and through better ties between patients and the physician practices that serve as their medical homes," wrote the fund in its summary of the results.

There is hope, though. Researchers say that the Affordable Care Act may help move us up a bit in the standings because it'll increase the number of people who have access to healthcare. So stay tuned for next year's results. [USA Today]

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