Had the proponents of Obamacare looked not to England and not to Canada but to Sweden, they'd have been provided a preview of this nation's healthcare future under Obamacare. Then, the data from England and Canada would have provided supportive data indicating that the proponents should take a step back, take a very deep breath, and question and think very carefully about their pet policy.
A professor at the Hankamer School of Business at Baylor University, Per Bylund, did just that and reports about his findings in a Wall Street Journal article.
Touted as one of the most successful socialist economies across the globe, Sweden's universal healthcare system is anything but that. Yes, Bylund reports, there is evidence that Sweden's system is consistently ranked as one of the best in terms of quality. But, just try access that system.
Heard that prognosis before?
FACTS: Patients in Sweden confront long wait times to get a doctor's appointment. They even have to wait for emergency care! Some procedures require a multi-year wait, if treatment isn't denied altogether.
- In 2013, the average wait time from initial referral to start of treatment for "intermediary and high risk" prostate cancer was an 220 days.
- An 80-year-old woman had to wait 4 hours before an ambulance arrived. But, no ambulance came to a one-month-old infant who had suffered a cerebral hemorrhage.
Bylund isn't "cherry picking" anecdotes. No, what's going on in Sweden is call "rationing." Too many people are seeking care and there are not enough healthcare providers to convey that care.
So, what happens? Those people buy private insurance. To wit:
- Since 2009, the number of private policyholders in Sweden has increased by 67%.
- But, get this: The average Swedish family already pays $20k annually in taxes toward universal healthcare and elderly care.
It's like having to pay tuition to send a child to private school because of the wretched state of the local public school. Rather than fix the school, taxes continue to subsidize a failing institution and parents who want their students to receive a good education are forced to go elsewhere.
What a gem of a solution!
Bylund--a Swedish citizen who has lived there for most of his life--argues that the only way to achieve the goal of affordable, high-quality and accessible health care is in a system that allows real competition between healthcare providers.
Heard that prescription before?
Try selling it to the Obamacare ideologues.
Let the discussion begin...
To read Per Bylund's article in the Wall Street Journal, click on the following link:
"What Sweden Can Teach Us About ObamaCare."