Australia’s national health service, Medicare, treats health care as a human right for all, including illegal immigrants – and it costs less and delivers better outcomes than US health care, according to McLaren.

Article 25 (1) of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted by the UN in 1948, states: ‘Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including . . . medical care . . . and the right to security in the event of . . . sickness, disability . . . ‘

These days, most people would say that an adequate standard of living includes readily available health care of a proper standard, that ‘health care delayed is health care denied.’ Most people would also expect that citizens of a wealthy country should be able to expect better health care than the benighted citizenry of a poor country. So it comes as something of a shock to learn that the United States, which spends almost 50 percent of the world’s total health expenditure, ranks way down on most health statistics. Let’s start with the World Bank Health Indicators, which show that, in 2009 (latest available figures), […]

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