Chart of the Day: US Way Behind on Healthcare Outcomes

This chart shows how OECD country’s spending and life expectancy differ from what you would expect based on how rich they are (per capita GDP):

As you can see, the US bottoms out meaning Americans spend more and get far, far less for their money than comparable countries.

This is a standard feature of a for profit public service industry – markets are terrible at figuring out how to distribute resources for the public good, so it ends up being a horribly expensive mess. This isn’t rocket science – markets work to maximize profit, so prices are determined by what makes the most money, not what works for the most people. If you can’t afford medicine, markets don’t care. That’s why government should run health care, not for profit insurance companies.

Ben Cohen is the editor and founder of The Daily Banter. He lives in Washington DC where he does podcasts, teaches Martial Arts, and tries to be a good father. He would be extremely disturbed if you took him too seriously.