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Old 12-07-2007, 10:51 AM   #21
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That's a great way of putting it youbet. Getting inside the system is everyone's best bet.
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Old 12-07-2007, 09:26 PM   #22
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I've live in a few countries and have had medical treatment in a number of them. Australia, US, Switzerland, France I would say are on par, however I am saying that as someone with the medical coverage to pay for said treatment. Surprisingly my medical treatment in Mexico was very good and I would not hesitate to go there if need be. What has to be remembered is a lot of Drs from Mexico train in the US and they don't turn into instant idiots the moment they cross the border.

My worst medical experience was actually in the UK. I found the standard of care to be very poor that I am shocked to see them ranked so high. If you weren't feeling depressed before, you would soon be after stepping foot inside a British hospital. This was not from a single experience of the NHS but from 5 years of living in England and multiple medical encounters.
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WHO Heath Care Rankings
Old 12-08-2007, 01:36 PM   #23
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WHO Heath Care Rankings

Quote:
The World Health Report says the main failings of many health systems are:
  • Many health ministries focus on the public sector and often disregard the frequently much larger private sector health care.
  • In many countries, some if not most physicians work simultaneously for the public sector and in private practice. This means the public sector ends up subsidizing unofficial private practice.
  • Many governments fail to prevent a "black market" in health, where widespread corruption, bribery, "moonlighting" and other illegal practices flourish. The black markets, which themselves are caused by malfunctioning health systems, and low income of health workers, further undermine those systems.
  • Many health ministries fail to enforce regulations that they themselves have created or are supposed to implement in the public interest.
PR-2000-43/ WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION : ASSESSES THE WORLD'S HEALTH SYSTEMS

If you just look at the few key countries:


So you can see how life expectancy dragged Thailand down. US is most responsive but gets nailed by costs, life expectancy, and unfair financial contribution.
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Old 12-08-2007, 02:15 PM   #24
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US is most responsive but gets nailed by costs.....and unfair financial contribution.
I find this part of the WHO's ranking interesting when considered in conjunction with the page Rich posted from the American College of Physicians position paper, which indicates there ae only four countries that pay less out of pocket than we do.

http://www.annals.org/cgi/reprint/00...10-00196v1.pdf
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Old 12-08-2007, 03:25 PM   #25
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Good point. And as well, looking at the percentages of out-of-pocket expenses paid by patients in some countries:

US----------13%
Australia-----20%
Portugal-----21%
Italy---------21%
Spain--------24%
Switzerland--32%
Greece------45%

Then looking at how those same countries ranked on WHO's overall score, it seems everyone of these countries with much higher patient out-of-pocket expense than US, nonetheless ranked higher in WHO's overall score (despite the "financial fairness" criterion of WHO):

World Health Organization’s Ranking of the Most Effective Health Systems

1. France
2. Italy
3. San Marino
4. Andorra
5. Malta
6. Singapore
7. Spain
8. Oman
9. Austria
10. Japan
11. Norway
12. Portugal
13. Monaco
14. Greece
15. Iceland
16. Luxembourg
17. Netherlands
18. United Kingdom
19. Ireland
20. Switzerland
21. Belgium
22. Colombia
23. Sweden
24. Cyprus
25. Germany
26. Saudi Arabia
27. United Arab Emirates
28. Israel
29. Morocco
30. Canada
31. Finland
32. Australia
33. Chile
34. Denmark
35. Dominica
36. Costa Rica
37. United States of America
38. Slovenia
39. Cuba
40. Brunei
41. New Zealand
42. Bahrain
43. Croatia
44. Qatar
45. Kuwait
46. Barbados
47. Thailand
48. Czech Republic
49. Malaysia
50. Poland

Source: WHO World Health Report 2000
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Old 12-08-2007, 03:30 PM   #26
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Then there is France with 8% patient out-of-pocket and number 1 ranking by WHO.

Does France's former reputation as being somewhat antagonistic of US travellers reveal itself also in France's medical system?
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Old 12-10-2007, 08:41 AM   #27
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This article points out some of the problems with our heath care system. You may be better off using a phony SS# and name when getting minor treatments .

One couple's descent into health-insurance hell - MarketWatch
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Old 12-10-2007, 12:37 PM   #28
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Based on.... ?? I think mostly familiarity.

I expect there are zillions of foreigners who feel the same way about getting care here -- horror stories about lost patients, wrong limb amputation, filthy conditions (in some hospitals), etc., not to mention life-shattering costs.

Your reaction is very understandable, but may not always be valid. Alas, we are not the only place that can deliver good care. Hey, I have practiced here for 33 years and am very proud of the care we have given. I just am not so proud of what has happened to the delivery system.

Meantime, others may have caught up. I wouldn't be terrified of getting my appendix out in most developed countries.
I tend to agree that so much is based on familiarity. I was talking to my wife (Estonian) about medical care. Her perception of the U.S., right or wrong, was that in America doctors prescribe drugs and perform operations unnecessarily just for the money.
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Old 12-10-2007, 12:59 PM   #29
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Does France's former reputation as being somewhat antagonistic of US travellers reveal itself also in France's medical system?
Honestly asking, what exactly do you mean?
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Old 12-10-2007, 02:03 PM   #30
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We've always found the French to be more friendly as a rule than many countries we've visited. Just takes a little cultural sensitivity, but then again that's true everywhere, and something Americans are not notoriously skillful at.

If you tour with shorts, white sneakers, loud shirt and voice, lots of ready rambunctious laughter and an attitude, better wait til you get home to have your appendix removed . You might otherwise wake up to discover that you lost some other organ instead (by accident, of course).
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Old 12-10-2007, 02:18 PM   #31
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We've always found the French to be more friendly as a rule than many countries we've visited. Just takes a little cultural sensitivity, but then again that's true everywhere, and something Americans are not notoriously skillful at.

If you tour with shorts, white sneakers, loud shirt and voice, lots of ready rambunctious laughter and an attitude, better wait til you get home to have your appendix removed . You might otherwise wake up to discover that you lost some other organ instead (by accident, of course).
I again agree here. I've been to France several times over the last 10 years and have had a nice experience each time. What you put into it, you'll get out of it.
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Old 12-10-2007, 07:10 PM   #32
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I again agree here. I've been to France several times over the last 10 years and have had a nice experience each time. What you put into it, you'll get out of it.
But then you are Estonian? Perhaps the French like Estonians better than they like Amercians.

I have never been to Europe period. Just recalling travel articles from years ago which gave the impression the French had something of an attitude toward Americans. Maybe that impression was never well-founded, or if it was, maybe it has changed.

Sarkozy, for sure, seems to "like" America more than his predecessors.
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Old 12-10-2007, 07:12 PM   #33
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If you tour with shorts, white sneakers, loud shirt and voice, lots of ready rambunctious laughter and an attitude, better wait til you get home to have your appendix removed . You might otherwise wake up to discover that you lost some other organ instead (by accident, of course).
So you wouldn't put it past the French medical establishment to put a cultural dislike above medical ethics?
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Old 12-10-2007, 07:44 PM   #34
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If you tour with shorts, white sneakers, loud shirt and voice, lots of ready rambunctious laughter and an attitude, better wait til you get home to have your appendix removed . You might otherwise wake up to discover that you lost some other organ instead (by accident, of course).
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So you wouldn't put it past the French medical establishment to put a cultural dislike above medical ethics?
Robert, "no worries, mon." See the little smiley-winky emoticon in the original post? That's generally used to indicated humor, humorous sarcasm, or good-natured teasing. You'll see it a lot around here.

You seem to take literally that I think a French surgeon would intentionally remove your gizzard instead of your appendix, all because you wore a loud shirt to France. Such is not the case.

He might take just a little piece of your kidney to make a point, but never your whole gizzard.
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Old 12-10-2007, 07:46 PM   #35
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He might take just a little piece of your kidney to make a point, but never your whole gizzard.
Oui.
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Old 12-10-2007, 10:27 PM   #36
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Robert, "no worries, mon." See the little smiley-winky emoticon in the original post? That's generally used to indicated humor, humorous sarcasm, or good-natured teasing. You'll see it a lot around here.

You seem to take literally that I think a French surgeon would intentionally remove your gizzard instead of your appendix, all because you wore a loud shirt to France. Such is not the case.

He might take just a little piece of your kidney to make a point, but never your whole gizzard.
You may very well be making a humourous tease. But how do I know if the French share your sense of humor!!??

Seeing as how I am getting to the age of having to get up at night once in awhile to go tinkle, I need ALL my kidney pieces intact!

Anyway, as to the French---seriously---any travellers from recent years can attest to their friendliness, lack of attitude to Americans, courtesy, civility to Americans----or attest to the opposite as to French treatment of Americans?
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Old 12-11-2007, 02:37 AM   #37
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But then you are Estonian? Perhaps the French like Estonians better than they like Amercians.
I'm an American citizen as well. I hold dual citizenships. Last time I was in France I was traveling with my American passport. But I do probably fly under the radar a bit better than your average American since I've lived in Europe for years and speak multiple languages. But I wouldn't say the French would treat you any worse than say an Austrian if you were acting like a dumbass.

Only time I was ever harassed about being an American anywhere (18+ countries I've been to) is by a drunk Scotsman who was appalled at my choice of whiskey.
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Old 12-11-2007, 09:12 AM   #38
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But I wouldn't say the French would treat you any worse than say an Austrian if you were acting like a dumbass.

Only time I was ever harassed about being an American anywhere (18+ countries I've been to) is by a drunk Scotsman who was appalled at my choice of whiskey.
Whereas Americans tend to welcome visitors to their country, the French could care less and just prefer to be left alone. This can be misinterpreted as hostility by sensitive travelers.
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