Sick around the world

September 14th, 2009

The US claims 37th place in the World Health Organization's rankings of the world's health systems and 15th out of 19 in the Commonwealth Fund's rankings by avoidable mortality in industrialized countries. You would think that as a part of the health care reform debate we'd take a look at nations 1-36  or 1 -14 to learn what's working in other countries.   Why, in a scientific enterprise such as medicine, do we not look at evidence based best practices?  Why is America so myopic in its views and why, as Timothy Noah says in Slate, do we think it somehow patriotic to achieve low scores. Long time Washington Post correspondent T.R. Reid in his new book The Healing of America: A Global Quest for Better, Cheaper, and Fairer Health Care takes us on the global quest for better health and better health care.  My conversation with T.R. Reid.