Sunday, June 07, 2009

Costly Care

If anybody still doubts that the United States needs single-payer health care, this story might close the case. What we see as "freedom" is fundamentally and increasingly flawed. I worked for three years in McAllen, Texas, and thought I understood many of the unusual things about this border city. Even I was surprised to find that it ranks near the top in per-capita medical spending. Since it ranks near the bottom in terms of income, this is especially problematic.

I do recall that my first doctor in neighboring Pharr was exceedingly fixated on money and not focused on understanding what patients needed. I later found a better doctor in McAllen, and my wife also had some good doctors there. But in a city with very high drop-out and illiteracy rates, we were better prepared than most to ask the right questions.

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