Something Not to Forget on Rising Healthcare Costs
There are more problems with our healthcare system than this allows, but Thomas Sowell’s point is well worth remembering:
Just as medical care, houses, and cars were all cheaper when they lacked things that they have today, so medical care in other countries is cheaper when it lacks many things that are more readily available in the United States.
There are more than four times as many Magnetic Resonance Imaging units (MRIs) per capita in the United States as in Britain or Canada, where there are government-run medical systems. There are more than twice as many CT scanners per capita in the United States as in Canada and more than four times as many per capita as in Britain.
Is it surprising that such things cost money?
The cost of developing a new pharmaceutical is now about a billion dollars. Neither political rhetoric nor government bureaucracies will make those costs go away.
We can, of course, refuse to pay these and other medical costs, just as we can refuse to buy air-conditioned homes with built-in microwave ovens. But that just means we pay attention only to prices and not to the value of what we get for those prices.