The state of health care in the United States is a disgrace. According to the Institute of Medicine’s report, The Quality Chasm, the United States spends twice as much than any other industrialized nation and provides half the quality of care. This is simply ludicrous. With all of the money spent on new nuts and bolts for hip replacements, hospitals, blockbuster pharmaceuticals and physician salaries there should be no reason for such poor quality of care in the U.S.
On top of the issue of poor quality of care, the United States spent nearly 16% of its GDP on health care in 2006. This means that more money is spent on health care than on the war in Iraq. There is an inherent problem with health care system in America. Thus, the questions to be posed are: what do we do? And who will do it?
Tackling the first question, what do we do with regard to the poor quality of health care? Well, we won’t discuss this issue in all of its glory (more to come on this issue) but I will say that the health care industry needs to start looking at engineering technologies and techniques in order to improve upon the quality of care.
The second question is even more difficult. Unfortunately the health care system doesn’t just rely on doctors and hospitals; we also have policy makers, politicians, interest groups, etc to consider and work with. This means that it is going to take a lot of reaching out from both parties to help solve this ever pressing issue. So, to answer the question of who will do that job, I believe that Barack Obama will be the one to help improve the quality of health care in this country. His plans to improve the health care system have great potential to make a positive difference towards the state of health care. An example that I came across that is working towards a positive direction is Obama’s push to encourage medical information technology. This plan to improve medical IT will not only reduce medical costs tremendously but also increase quality of care by reducing error in diagnosis.
I believe that there is an air of hope to improve the health care system in America and that Obama is the one to lead us in the right direction. His platform on health is one that focuses on efficiency, effectiveness, and quality. It would be a shame to live another four years a state of poor health. Let’s make the right decision.