Kevin Price
Could Obama's health care approach foster new "Dark Ages"?
By Kevin Price
August 26, 2009

Americans have been discussing concerns about rationed (or government driven) health care for years. In the early 1990s, when Bill Clinton pursued such a program, we heard daily about the problems of long lines and lack of doctors that were common in government programs. Now we are hearing stories about the much lower success rates in countries with government care when it comes to combating major diseases. This goes against one of the fundamental reasons people argue for government care — without fear of cost, people will go to the doctor quicker, get diagnosed earlier (or better still do the things that will prevent disease), and live longer and healthier lives. The facts are not supporting this hypothesis:

  • The average time frame between a general practitioner and treatment in Canada's socialized health care program is more than 4 months (17.3 weeks) according to the Frazier Institute.

  • 20% of curable lung cancer patients in the UK die due to long waiting lists, according to the Manhattan Institute. This is also the case in other conditions as I can speak from my own personal circumstances in which I lost my grandfather and an aunt due to Britain's famous lines.

  • According to Investors Business Daily: "In France, the supply of doctors is so limited that during an August 2003 heat wave — when many doctors were on vacation and hospitals were stretched beyond capacity — 15,000 elderly citizens died."

  • According to Forbes Magazine, the prostate cancer survival rate in the US is 80 percent, in the UK it is 44 percent.

These areas are huge in and of themselves, but the bigger issue is the impact rationed care will have on the development of new drugs, technology, and other innovations in health care. The poor quality of service seen in socialized systems cited above are largely would be even worse if not for the innovations created by the US system. Imagine how much more difficult quality care will be to achieve when all but the most altruistic incentives for improvements disappear. The profit driven health care system of the US drives innovation.

The Federal Reserve Bank did an evaluation of the ten leading innovations of 2001. These included improvements and discoveries in several areas, such as changes in MRIs, development of drugs for high blood pressure and heart disease, cholesterol reducing drugs, innovations in breast cancer diagnosis, surgery for heart failure, eye surgery, and more. In the ten different major areas of discovery, the United States dominated the list with its involvement in eight. The only other countries that played a role were the United Kingdom and Japan, each having only two innovations each.

Self interest has always driven innovation. The US has stood alone as a country that has made such a primary driver in changes in health care. It makes sense to wonder what the effects of worldwide health care socialism has already had on health care. Imagine what it will be like when the last bastion of innovation, the United States, loses the profit motive that has made this country the leader in health care discoveries for decades.

© Kevin Price


The views expressed by RenewAmerica columnists are their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of RenewAmerica or its affiliates.
(See RenewAmerica's publishing standards.)

Click to enlarge

Kevin Price

Kevin Price is Publisher and Editor in Chief of

His background is eclectic and includes years of experience in both business and public policy, as well as two decades of experience in broadcast journalism. He was an aide to U.S. Senator Gordon Humphrey (R-NH) and later went on to work in policy areas with some of the nation's leading think tanks including the National Center for Public Policy Research and was part of the Heritage Foundation's Annual Guide to Public Policy Experts... (more)


Receive future articles by Kevin Price: Click here

More by this author


Stephen Stone
The most egregious lies Evan McMullin and the media have told about Sen. Mike Lee

Siena Hoefling
Protect the Children: Update with VIDEO

Stephen Stone
Flashback: Dems' fake claim that Trump and Utah congressional hopeful Burgess Owens want 'renewed nuclear testing' blows up when examined

Cliff Kincaid
The origins of queer communism

Curtis Dahlgren
Modern "education:" Blend in; don't stand out, whatever you do

Matt C. Abbott
The case of the Rev. Christopher Senk

Rev. Mark H. Creech
Revelation Chapter 13: The Beast, persecution, and providence

Louie Verrecchio
Dodgers Pride Night: Catholics strike out looking

Jerry Newcombe
Is America still worth fighting for?

Michael Bresciani
Some sound biblical advice for candidate Donald Trump

Marsha West
Are you praying to the only true God?

Tom DeWeese
Unesco and Red Flag Laws

Cliff Kincaid
Ukraine deserves the right to live

Pete Riehm
Corruption confirmed and still no consequences

Rev. Mark H. Creech
Revelation Chapter 13: The activities of the Beast
  More columns


Click for full cartoon
More cartoons


Matt C. Abbott
Chris Adamo
Russ J. Alan
Bonnie Alba
Chuck Baldwin
Kevin J. Banet
J. Matt Barber
Fr. Tom Bartolomeo
. . .
[See more]

Sister sites