FACT SHEET: Socialized Medicine Is a Failure Everywhere It's Been Tried
In terms of both availability and quality of care, single-payer systems leave citizens out in the cold
February 7, 2017
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) debated Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) in a CNN Town Hall tonight regarding the future of Obamacare. During the debate, Sen. Cruz debunked the oft-repeated myth that countries with socialized, single-payer health care systems have better health outcomes than the United States.
WAIT TIMES IN COUNTRIES WITH SOCIALIZED MEDICINE ARE ATROCIOUS
STATS: UNITED KINGDOM
- “The figures show that a total of 3.7 million people in the UK are now on the waiting list for non-urgent operations, up from 2.4 million in 2008.” -- The Telegraph
- “More than 360,000 of them have been on the waiting list for more than the minimum waiting time of 18 weeks, equivalent to one in 10.” -- The Telegraph
- “It means that 1 in 14 people living in England is now on an NHS waiting list.” The Telegraph
CITIZENS IN SINGLE PAYER SYSTEMS ARE REGULARLY DENIED PROCEDURES OR WAIT MONTHS FOR THEM
STATS: UNITED KINGDOM
- Data has shown that older patients are less likely to receive surgery for cancer treatment than younger ones. A 2011 report noted that only 39 percent of women over 80 in the UK receive surgery for breast cancer, compared to 90 percent of women under 50. -- Macmillan Cancer Support summary of study by the National Cancer Intelligence Network.
- More than 80 percent of older patients in the UK believe they suffer discrimination from the National Health Service. Daily Mail
REAL-LIFE STORIES: UNITED KINGDOM
- In Glasgow, Scotland, the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital is so overburdened, one day this past January it had to turn away three women who were in labor. Glasgow Live
- In a hospital in Essex, doctors twice cancelled a potentially life-saving surgery for a patient with esophageal cancer because there were no free beds in the intensive-care unit. The Guardian
- In Wales, an 82-year-old woman who had fallen waited eight hours on the floor before an ambulance arrived. Her daughter sat beside her during the ordeal and described it as "one of the longest nights of my life." The Guardian
- “Specialist physicians surveyed report a median waiting time of 20 weeks between referral from a general practitioner and receipt of treatment—longer than the wait of 18.3 weeks reported in 2015. 2016’s wait time—the longest ever recorded in this survey’s history—is 115% longer than in 1993, when it was just 9.3 weeks.” -- Fraser Institute
- The average wait time in 2014 was 83 days for cataract surgery, 55 days for a hip replacement, and 59 days for a knee replacement. -- OECD
The average wait time in 2013 was 128 days for cataract surgery, 154 days for a hip replacement, and 183 days for a knee replacement. -- OECD
THE MYTH OF SCANDINAVIAN SUCCESS
- Sweden fell from 4th to 13th richest nation in the world between 1975 and the mid-1990s.
- Annual working hours in Denmark fell by 32 per cent between 1950 and 1990.
- Between 1950 and 2000, Sweden’s net job creation in the private sector was zero despite a population increase of two million.
- Wealth inequality in Sweden exceeded that of the UK, US and Canada in 2008.
Source: “Scandinavian Unexceptionalism” by Nima Sanandaji, Institute of Economic Affairs, London 2015.