Why American Health Care Costs so Much Why American Health Care Costs so Much
Lifestyle

Why American Health Care Costs so Much

by Zach Frechette

November 4, 2009
Ezra Klein sat down with an insurance industry CEO to try and better understand what's going on with our health care system. The most interesting part of the conversation (to hear him tell it) was seeing charts that actually assign costs-in dollars-to different units of care (like pills, doctor visits, and lab tests), and then compare those costs to the same units in different countries. He describes the United States column in all the bar charts like "a New York skyscraper that got lost in downtown Des Moines" in comparison to all the other countries. And, looking at the charts, it's hard not to agree. The takeaway: our health care costs more because we let insurance companies and care providers charge more. In other countries, governments set the rates for different treatments and drugs.
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Why American Health Care Costs so Much