Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Health care and life expectancy

Health v. Health Care   [Paul Howard]

Critics of America's health-care system like to note that the U.S. appears to lag other developed nations in life-expectancy. But this claim confuses health and health care: Many factors (smoking, teen pregnancy, obesity, murder and accident rates) can lower life-expectancy without telling us much if anything about the quality of health care per se. 

In other words, we need to disaggregate -- separate out factors related to our health care system -- before judging.

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