20 Disturbing Facts on US Healthcare Everybody Should Know

Written by molly

1) 46 Million American have NO health insurance.

2) 9.4 Million children have No health insurance.

3) Insurance costs are outpacing income by eight-fold.

4) Every year one Million Americans lose their coverage.

5) The cost of health care causes bankruptcy every 30 seconds.

6) By the end of 2009 1.5 Million people are going to lose their homes due to illness.

7) America spends twice as much per person on health care as other rich countries.

8) Americans spent $2.2 Trillion on health care in 2008.

9) 1/3 of the US population under age 65 has NO health insurance.

10) US Health care costs are twice the GDP of India.

11) Americans life expectancy is 2 years less than Europeans.

12) Projected health care costs by 2012 are $3.1 Trillion a year.

13) Health care cost are 4 times higher than our national defense.

14) America spent 17% of it’s GDP on health care in 2008.

15) By 2017 Americans will be spending 20% of GDP on health care.

16) France spends 9.5% of GDP on health care, Switzerland spends 10.9%, Canada spends 9.7%, every person in those countries has health insurance.

17) Premiums for employer based health care went up by 5% in 2008, small employers premiums went up 5.5%, small business with less than 24 workers went up 6.8%.

18) Annual premiums for family coverage eclipsed the gross earnings for a full time, minimum wage worker ($10, 712) per year.

19) Health insurance is the fastest growing expense cost component for employers, health care costs will over take profits.

20) Health insurance premiums have grown four times faster than wages.

23 thoughts on “20 Disturbing Facts on US Healthcare Everybody Should Know

  1. Ds Kenney

    One More interesting Fact: The US Dept of Health counts the 12.4 Million ILLEGAL immigrants in that number as well as the 7.2 million who are so rich they don’t want health insurance.

  2. etaoin shrdlu

    You forgot to mention that 97.365 per cent of all statistics placed on the web to advance a political cause are made up on the spot.

  3. Drew

    Thank goodness I live in the UK. Our NHS may not be perfect but its free at the point of delivery. I feel sorry for people living in the US as healthcare really is an intractable problem.

  4. Travis

    you know what, i may pay more for healthcare, but i get it when i need it. im not dying from cancer while sitting on some waiting list to get a doctor. good luck canada.

  5. Beth

    Nice try Travis. But, that ain’t the case. My next door neighbour started treatment for Cancer the week after her diagnosis. Meanwhile in Alabama my American cousin had to wait 52 hours in an ER just to treat a broken arm. Your healthcare bankrupts, and it ain’t even reliable. I’ll stay here in Canada where its safe and healthy.

  6. Delicious Clams

    It’s unbelievable that people would rather put themselves and their family at risk just because they don’t like Obama. It’s true, it’s undebatable, our health care is absolutely terrible. It NEEDS to be reformed, any way possible.

    Also, I can’t believe how brainwashed you all are. Any fact or piece of information you don’t agree with you call propaganda. You don’t do your own research, you don’t care how well the study was done, you don’t do anything except ignore what you don’t want to hear. It’s pathetic.

  7. Rhett

    It is obvious something needs to change. By the way if you think the numbers are “made up” click on one of the facts and read the whole article. If you are really so inclined check their references. Then come back and comment how the numbers are made up.

    Oh yea and its so true that people are waiting in lines in Canada to see a doctor. Laughable

  8. Phil

    I am an American and think it is really hard for Americans to acknowledge that other countries have it better than we do at anything, including medicine. I had to travel to Canada to get the worldwide gold standard treatment for Meniere’s disease because in the US, the drug, SERC, is not approved by the FDA. Yet this drug alleviates and controls the symptoms. Why should I have to go to Canada to get it? Well I did. And I didn’t have to wait in line either. I made my appointment, PAID CASH (very important in Canada if you’re not Canadian), was seen by the doctor, had my prescription filled and came home with the drugs. Why shouldn’t this be available in the US if it is available in every other country in the world. Really made me realize my own country is a bit third world itself in some respects. By the way, my US insurance company reimbursed me for the treatment, not 100% but still I got some reimbursement. In the US, the treatment is Valium (uh, addictive) or getting a nerve section (uh, walker anyone?) I left the country for treatment and am living a normal life, not addicted to Valium and not using a walker. FDA WAKE UP!

  9. Flyover_Country_John

    1. Highly inflated number includes illegal.
    2. That’s sad, their parents better start being parents and get them health insurance.
    3. How much of that is due to over-regulation and sue-happy ambulance chasers
    . (Neither of which the Obama Administration wants to address)
    4. You used skewed numbers in #1, is stat inflated as well?
    5. Wow, they should have bought health insurance.
    6. Wow, they should have bought health insurance.
    7. Because everything is MUCH more expensive due to over regulation and frivolous lawsuits.
    8. A lot of money. Wonder how many times that number would increase if people were told healthcare was “free” and started abusing the system.
    9. I’d bet a lot of those people could buy health insurance with the cash from one weekend at the bar. How many of those people have iPhones? Video game systems that cost $200-$500??
    10. With India’s economy expanding and its growing middle class, this gap will close. (Thank you Capitalism! Works 100% of the time it has been tried.)
    11. That’s because we are fat-asses due to having such a high standard of living and being told our health is someone else’s responsibility. Socialize US health care and watch this gap and its people widen.
    12. Sounds like we need tort reform and to kick the feds out of private business.
    13. See #12
    14. 1/6th of the US economy. NOTHING could go wrong if corrupt polititions nationalize it.
    15. I say 40%+ if the feds take over.
    16. But but but all the propaganda said we weren’t nationalizing health care… what would those comparisons have ANYTHING to do with we we are headed for. (Also nationalized health care is blatently unconstitutional. Not that that will stop them from trying)
    17. Sounds like the Bush tax-cuts should be extended to help out the small business people and working families. How much would Cap & Trade hit these same people?
    18. You aren’t supposed to raise a family on minimum wage. It’s for high school students. If you are trying to raise a family on minimum wage you are a moron. Just because you didn’t “just say no” when you were a teenager does NOT make your family my responsibility.
    19. See #12
    20. See #12. Time to move government out of business’s way so the economy can grow and wages can increase.

  10. Jake

    The cruelty of Flyover_Couuntry_John is disgusting. I can sum up all 20 of his points as: You made a mistake, that’s your problem, and screw you. Where has compassion gone? It’s far right fundamentalists like you that keep resisting the politics of progress, compassion, and equality. I assume you didn’t attend college, although you’ll probably lie and claim you did.

  11. bannen einhämmern


    You’re a dreamboat! So compassionate, caring and progressive… You light my ass on fire, honey suckle. Damn those righty whitey meanie weenies, I want to nurture the general public on my soft man breasts — with you. Free, free for all! Obama! Obama! Obama!

    BTW, I love you. Come by anytime and let me butter up those pale cheeks of yours.

  12. A Mukherjee

    The situation is neither good nor sustainable. The health industry should reduce the cost of health care if they want to perpetuate the scam.

  13. Marsh

    Seems like the author needs to do a bit more research on the topic of health care. First off, you need to understand the huge difference between health ~care~ and health ~insurance~. Everyone in America, even illegal immigrants, are legally entitled to health care. It’s ~against the law~ for a medical hospital to turn away a patient simply because they lack health insurance. Also, nowhere near 46 million Americans are without health insurance. A huge percentage of those so-called “Americans” are illegal immigrants and thus should never be classified as American citizens. Another huge percentage of the uninsured already qualify for government provided health insurance but fail to realize it.

    Also many of those uninsured Americans are young people like me who simply don’t need it and decide to spend their income on other goods and services such as expensive designer jeans, the latest electronics and new spinning rims for their car. It’s called ~priorities~ and most people in their 20s realize that their chances of getting cancer or needing on organ transplant are extremely low. Obtaining and affording health care also isn’t hard. I just selected my first plan a few weeks ago and there’s a huge selection of plans to choose from at various prices. I went with a pretty standard plan and am perfectly happy with it. And I’m by no means rolling in cash like Scrooge McDuck.

    Also you seem to trumpeting the glory of the health care systems in Europe and Canada without really understanding them. First of all, many of these countries have just as many problems with their health care systems as we do. They’re nowhere near as utopian as the leftist media (and this acticle) imply. Due to their governments controlling their health care systems totally and absoluely, people in those countries pretty much have zero choice in the health care they receive. Whatever their government deems adequate to provide for them is what they’re stuck with. And when health care is perceived as being “free” (which it’s not; but we’ll get to that later) by the general public, it’s used far more – often excessively.

    If an American gets a cold or flu they tend to just take over-the-counter medicine from their local store and ride it out without visiting their doctor – since there’s really no need to see a doctor for a common minor illness anyway. But in many European countries a slight fever is a cause to visit local medical facilities. Some people simply choose to lounge around health care facilities out of boredom pretending to be sick – especially the lonely and elderly. And since there’s no real incentive for government run health facilities to provide timely and pleasent medical care there’s often ~insane~ waiting periods and lack of basic medical equipment which most Americans would perceive as being almost Third World in quality.

    A waiting period in a typical government run metropolitan medical facility can be anywhere from 45 minutes to 11+ hours (literally). And numerous common medical procedures such as hip replacements can often have waiting periods of 12+ months(!). Not to mention the much less pleasent and considerate attitudes of the staff or even the lack of basic health standards (thousands of people die in UK hospitals every single year due to lack of basic hygene such as changing the sheets for example) The main reasons why there’s such long waiting periods in European countries or Canada is because the government can never possibly meet the high demands for health care from their citizens.

    Which causes them to ration and limit care (and cut corners whenever possible) in order to keep costs low. Which is why so many Canadians travel to America in order to receive medical care every single year. Due to their government totally running their health care system they have a severe lack of doctors, specialists, advanced medical equipment and they regularly flatout deny people from receieving life saving treatments. And since America has an abundance of doctors and specialists and advanced medical technology (90% of which is invented right here in America and exported around the world) they choose to come here to receive treatment. Even Canadian politicians have had to embarrassingly travel to America in order to receive crucial medical care.

    Also the idea that the medical care in Europe or Canada is free is absurd. It certainly isn’t funded by magic make believe cash. They receive universal health care at the expense of massive taxes which are almost ~double~ of those in America. The avergae European or Canadian hands over a whopping 50-60%+ of their income to their governments in taxes. Most Americans would simply never tolerate that level of government theft of their income. In fact, there’d probably be widespread rioting in the streets in rejection of this forced slavery. Also the slightly lower life expentency rates are misleading. America is notoriously unhealthy and obese and therefore suffers many more health problems (which also contributes to our much higher costs).

    That simply isn’t related to our health care system but is instead a lifestyle issue. The facts plainly speak for themselves: America’s privatized health care system is simply far superior to European health care on a wide range of illnesses – cancer especially. The survival rates for numerous cancers in Europe and Canada are criminally low. Take prostate cancer for example which is one of the most common cancers. Americans have a 95% survival rate for prostate cancer while many European countries and Canada can dip as low as having a shocking survival rate of 55%. Also you have to take into account that America essentially subsidizes these European and Candian health care systems by 1) inventing and exporting more medical breakthrows than the entire world combined and 2) our large military force allows them to spend pennies on their own defense and instead spend those funds on universal health care systems.

    All in all, our health care system certainly has problems. But Obama’s and the Democraps health care plan is just atrocious and will only make matters worse.

  14. AA

    Marsh, I’d like to know where you got those statistics from with regards to prostate cancer survival rates in Canada.

    And as a Canadian, I can also tell you right now that you’re dead wrong about healthcare in Canada. I have enough American relatives and friends, and they all tell me the state of healthcare in the US is atrocious. Of course, any rational person knows this with just a bit of research. You’re obviously one of those Americans who can’t acknowledge this fact, and therefore, grasp at straws to justify your state of denial.

    Waiting times in Canada are not as long as you think, it’s a joke that you even try to perpetuate that myth because it clearly proves you know nothing about the Canadian healthcare system.

    “Which causes them to ration and limit care (and cut corners whenever possible) in order to keep costs low. Which is why so many Canadians travel to America in order to receive medical care every single year.”

    Wrong, and wrong. You have absolutely no proof that we “ration and limit” healthcare, what a ridiculous theory. Canadians don’t settle for 2nd best when it comes to healthcare, it’s quite shocking how little you know about our healthcare system. And did you forget about the numerous Canadians living in America who travel back to Canada whenever they need costly operations or medicine? I guess that just conveniently slipped your mind, right?

  15. Brayden


    Niether am I! On average, Canada has shorter waitings times. And it’s free. Now text time please go learn your facts before you talk smack about Canada.

    On average, an American is also more likely to die of cancer and a Canadian will live three years longer.

    And you can go trying to make the number 50 million sound better, but here is the fact: America is the onlyi ndustrialized wealthy nation in the world that does not have universal healthcare. A person born in Cuba can expect to have better chances at surviving birth and better chances at living longer than an American.

    The top 19 countries with highest life expectancies all have universal health care. The US is 36, Canada is 11.

    I don’t care what you try to say to make the number sound better, as long as you deny healthcare free to one citizen, it’s utterly pathetic. You would rather have aircraft carriers than healthcare.

    I know you Americans think your healthcare is fine, but I dare you to go into the UK or Canada or frankly like half the world (even god damn Cuba and Israel) and becoem a citizen for one year. You would never go back. Serivce is faster, higher quality, and free.

    You would live longer, and accordig to the US Health Department, be significantly more healthy.

    Last year, forty million Americans said they could not afford treatment or medicine that they desperatly needed.

    One of the growing reasons for emigration from the US to other places, is for free health care.

    As for your stats, they are dead wrong AA. I just checked myself. Did you know half of all American bankruptciues are because of medical bills, and three quarters of those had insurance anyways?

    I would like to see where you got your sources from, probably the waitress at Kinkos.

  16. Brayden

    Sorry AA not you, I meant Marsh.

    And did you know that even thoug we pay more taxes, Canadians make $20,000 more on average a year? And our government spends less on healthcare than yours does, because 75% of your hospital patients with severe illness were preventable but didn’t come in because they couldn’t afford to or didn’t want to have to pay.

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