Healthcare reform in the US
More changes are required
- By: Raphael Calel, Kathy Liu
In 2010 the US Congress passed the Affordable Care Act, the most sweeping reform to the US healthcare system in decades. But does it adequately deal with the root problems?
More is spent on healthcare in the United States than in any other country. In 2007, healthcare costs were $7285 (£4473; €5150) per person in the US (purchasing power parity adjusted), of which $3317 were contributed by government. In the same period, healthcare cost only $2992 per person in the United Kingdom, of which $2446 came from the government.1
So although high healthcare costs are considered a major problem in the UK, the US government still spent 35% more per person and only covered 45.5% of total healthcare expenditure (compared with 81.7% in the UK) (fig 1).1
The US has 27 doctors per 10 000 people (there are 21 in the UK), 16 dentists (four in the UK). It is not