News and Opinion for Democrats Against Bush -- Part II
World Health Organization Gives U.S. Low Rating
PT. II - HOME PAGE
PT. II - CONTENTS
BUSH and the MEDIA
CIVIL RIGHTS
-- Gay Rights
THE ECONOMY
-- The Real Deficit
---- Deficit Lies
-- International Debt
---- Children Will Pay
-- Tax Cut Con Game
---- Tax-Cut Lies
------ to Small Business
---- Phony Benefits
---- Hurting States
---- Why Accepted?
---- Cuts Will Backfire
-- Low-Tax Mania
-- Move toward Flat Tax
-- Corp. Tax Dodgers
-- Corporate Welfare
---- Halliburton
-- The SUV Boondoggle
-- Unemploym't Worse
------ Comp. Denied
---- Jobs Not Created
-- Widespread Poverty
-- False Recovery
-- Stock Market
EDUCATION
-- Texas Sch. Scandals
-- Broken Promises
-- Abandoned Youth
-- College Aid Cut
-- Aid to Rich Colleges
-- Textbooks Censored
-- Acad. Freedom Denied
ELECTRONIC VOTING -- --- A Crucial Issue
ENERGY
-- Monstrous Bill
---- Allows Blackouts
---- Bi-Part. Oppos'n
-- New Energy Bill
ENVIRONMENT
-- Bush's "Eco-Speak"
---- How to Tell Lies
-- Crimes v. Nature
---- Air Pollution
---- Global Warming
---- Ozone Depletion
---- Chemical Hazards
---- Loss of Wildlife
-- States Combat Bush
---- Power Plant Suits
-- Pension Funds, Too
LABOR ISSUES
-- Worker Safety
-- Real Jobless Stats
-- Overtime in Danger
--"Productivity"
PUBLIC HEALTH
-- Poor Ranking
-- Privatized Socialism
-- Health Insurance
---- The Uninsured
------ Middle Class
-- Cost of Drugs
-- Medicare
---- A Cynical Bill
---- Favoring HMOs
---- $$ to Drug Co.s
---- Bait and Switch
---- AARP Sells Out
---- Bullying to Win
---- Australian Critique
---- Some Good News
-- Chill on Research
TRANSPORTATION
-- Amtrak
-- Mars vs. Amtrak
WAR OF IDEAS
-- Use of Language
WAR on TERROR
--'Enemy Combatants'
-- Ultra-Secret Trials
-- Homeland Insecurity
---- Funds Miss Needs
WAR on CIVIL RIGHTS
-- FBI Prying Grows
---- Targeting Protests
------ & Anti-Bush Talk
-- Computer Privacy
-- Patriot Act
---- Excesses
------ Cure - SAFE Act
---- Dangers
---- Author's Fear
---- Librarians' Warning
--"Patriot Act II"
---- Death for Protest?
---- Sneak Enactments
-- CAPPS II
---- GAO Criticisms
---- EFF Concerns
-- Guantanamo
---- Conditions
---- Legal Status
---- UK Judge's Blast
-- Torture Condoned
---- Canadian's Ordeal
-- Yousef Yee
WAR on SCIENCE
-- Scientists Accuse
---- Admin. Can't Deny
WAR on WOMEN
-- Abortion Truths
-- Notorious Photo
WAR on WORKING FAMILIES

HEALTH CARE:   The U.S. ranked 37th.  ' Unlike most of the nations commended by WHO, the United States doesn't have one comprehensive health system, noted Dr. Crone. "Instead, we have multiple microsystems." --See article at left

LIFE EXPECTANCY:   ' The United States rated 24th under this system, or an average of 70.0 years of healthy life for babies born in 1999. ...  "Basically, you die earlier and spend more time disabled if you’re an American rather than a member of most other advanced countries." '  --See article at right

American Medical Care
GOVERNMENT & MEDICINE

The world's health care: How do we rank?

The United States spends a great deal on health care but gains too little, says the World Health Organization.

By Susan Landers, AMNews staff. Aug. 28, 2000.

The complete article is currently (3/29/04) available on the AMNews website at-- http://www.ama-assn.org/amednews/2000/08/28/gvsa0828.htm

Excerpt--

Health care in the United States is second to none. Right? Well, not according to the World Health Organization. A recent WHO survey ranked the United States 37th in overall health system performance -- sandwiched between Costa Rica and Slovenia. This dismal showing occurred despite the fact that the United States spends more on health care -- 13.7% of its gross domestic product -- than any other of the 191 WHO nations.

WHO named France as the nation that provides the best overall health care to its citizens. The other countries that round out the top five are: Italy and the tiny nations of San Marino (also known as the Most Serene Republic of San Marino), Andorra (or the Principality of Andorra) and Malta.

How are these findings possible? After all, foreign heads of state who could get health care anywhere choose the United States. ...

"The United States at its best has as good medical care as you'll get anywhere in the world. It really is superb," said Herbert Pardes, MD, president and CEO of New York Presbyterian Healthcare Network.

"But one of the problems is, while we have health care at the very best, we don't have all of our citizens covered for health care when they should be," he said. "We have 44 million Americans without coverage."  ...

Copyright 2000 American Medical Association. All rights reserved.

See also this press release on the WHO website--  http://www.who.int/inf-pr-2000/en/pr2000-44.html -

For the full report, click here-- http://www.who.int/health-systems-performance/whr2000.htm

World Health Organization
 
Press Release WHO
Released in Washington, D.C. and Geneva, Switzerland
4 June 2000 
 
WHO Issues New Healthy Life Expectancy Rankings
Japan Number One in New ‘Healthy Life’ System
 
For the complete article, click here-- http://www.who.int/inf-pr-2000/en/pr2000-life.html
 
Japanese have the longest healthy life expectancy of 74.5 years among 191 countries, versus less than 26 years for the lowest-ranking country of Sierra Leone, based on a new way to calculate healthy life expectancy developed by the World Health Organization (WHO).
 
Previously, life expectancy estimates were based on the overall length of life based on mortality data only.
 
For the first time, the WHO has calculated healthy life expectancy for babies born in 1999 based upon an indicator developed by WHO scientists, Disability Adjusted Life Expectancy (DALE). DALE summarizes the expected number of years to be lived in what might be termed the equivalent of "full health." To calculate DALE, the years of ill-health are weighted according to severity and subtracted from the expected overall life expectancy to give the equivalent years of healthy life.
 
The WHO rankings show that years lost to disability are substantially higher in poorer countries because some limitations -- injury, blindness, paralysis and the debilitating effects of several tropical diseases such as malaria -- strike children and young adults. People in the healthiest regions lose some 9 percent of their lives to disability, versus 14 percent in the worst-off countries.
In terms of DALE, the rest of the top 10 nations are Australia, 73.2 years; France, 73.1; Sweden, 73.0; Spain, 72.8; Italy, 72.7; Greece, 72.5; Switzerland, 72.5; Monaco, 72.4; and Andorra, 72.3.
 
DALE is estimated to equal or exceed 70 years in 24 countries, and 60 years in over half the Member States of WHO. At the other extreme are 32 countries where disability-adjusted life expectancy is estimated to be less than 40 years. Many of these are countries with major epidemics of HIV/AIDS, among other causes.
 
The United States rated 24th under this system, or an average of 70.0 years of healthy life for babies born in 1999. The WHO also breaks down life expectancy by sex for each country. Under this system, U.S. female babies could expect 72.6 years of healthy life, versus just 67.5 years for male babies.
"The position of the United States is one of the major surprises of the new rating system," says Christopher Murray, M.D., Ph.D., Director of WHO's Global Programme on Evidence for Health Policy. "Basically, you die earlier and spend more time disabled if you’re an American rather than a member of most other advanced countries."
 
The WHO cites various causes for why the United States ranks relatively low among wealthy nations. These reasons include:
 
In the United States, some groups, such as Native Americans, rural African Americans and the inner city poor, have extremely poor health, more characteristic of a poor developing country rather than a rich industrialized one.
The HIV epidemic causes a higher proportion of death and disability to U.S. young and middle-aged than in most other advanced countries. HIV-AIDS cut three months from the healthy life expectancy of male American babies born in 1999, and one month from female lives;
 
The U.S. is one of the leading countries for cancers relating to tobacco, especially lung cancer Tobacco use also causes chronic lung disease.
A high coronary heart disease rate, which has dropped in recent years but remains high;
Fairly high levels of violence, especially of homicides, when compared to other industrial countries. ....
 
 
High-ranking countries
 
Several factors go into making Japan number one in the rankings. One is the low rate of heart disease, associated with the traditional low fat diet. The national diet is changing, with high fat foods such as red meat becoming common. The effect of tobacco has also been mild until recently, with low lung cancer rates. These rates for men are expected to jump in coming years as the long-term effects of the post-World War II smoking popularity begin to hit.
In Australia, smoking rates have dropped sharply from their earlier peaks, leading to lower lung cancer and heart problem rates.
 
France registered high because of the health of its women, which pulled up the overall average.
 
French women never smoked in any large numbers until recently. Many young French women, however, have begun smoking, which will lead to rapid increases in lung cancer rates and other diseases associated with tobacco in 10 to 20 years. French men are already suffering from growing rates of these diseases from tobacco.
 
Sweden ranks high because of its health care system and because tobacco use is relatively low. ...
 
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
(Christopher Murray, M.D., Ph.D., Director of WHO's Global Programme on Evidence for Health Policy, is available for telephone interviews on Thursday and Friday, June 1-2. Please call 703-820-2244 to schedule time.)
 

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