A man with a headache goes to the hospital and is floored by what he learns at checkout.

Why is health care so much more expensive in the United States than the rest of the world?

A man with a headache walks into a hospital and is whisked into the rigmarole of American health care. He's floored by what he learns at the end of his visit. Hint: It isn't his diagnosis. It's his hospital bill.

Follow his unfortunate journey in this funny and eye-opening tour of the U.S. health care system with WE THE ECONOMY:

<span class="redactor-invisible-space"></span>

The U.S. has the world's most expensive health care. But is it the best in the world?


All GIFs via WE THE ECONOMY.

Survey says: Not even close. The 2015 Social Progress Index ranks the U.S. as 68th (among 133 countries) in health and wellness. And according to a report by the Commonwealth Fund:

"The United States health care system is the most expensive in the world, but ... the U.S. underperforms relative to other countries on most dimensions of performance."

Among the 11 wealthy countries they studied, the U.S. ranked last on health care access, efficiency, and equity. So much for "best in the world," huh?

What's the biggest difference between the health care in the U.S. and the rest of the developed world?

It's "the absence of universal health insurance coverage," say the researchers at the Commonwealth Fund. The Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) has insured an additional 16 million Americans, making possible "the largest drop in the uninsured rate in four decades."

And after years of debate and uncertainty over the future of the law, the Supreme Court finally ruled Obamacare subsidies are legit under the Constitution.

But with almost half of all states having refused the Medicaid expansion (because politics works in mysterious stupid ways), over 4 million Americans, mostly across the South, have fallen through the cracks.

Who's to blame for the country's skyrocketing health care costs? If only there were a simple answer.


According to the video, our health care cost conundrum was the result of bad choices by a lot of people who, in looking out for only themselves, placed society at large at risk:

"The insurance companies fought it because they'd be losing money. And the doctors fought it because they would lose money and independence. And a lot of Americans just didn't trust the federal government to run their health care."

Of course, powerful business interests like insurance and pharmaceuticals drive up our costs with political maneuvering and ploys for market control.

Big Pharma: "Otherwise everyone will copy me and drive the price down!"

Insurance: "Yes, it is."

Like millions of people, this story's man of mishap is fed up with greed in American health care.

In a fit of frustration, he demands answers:

"Why can't you charge one price for the whole procedure instead of for every blood test and an aspirin? Why can't hospitals list their prices? And why isn't there price control like there are in other countries?"

Why indeed?

More

Abigail Disney is the granddaughter of the late Roy Disney, the co-founder of the Walt Disney Co. Abigail herself does not have a job within the company, but she has made some public complaints about the way things are being run and how it is effecting the employees of the company.

Disney recently spoke on the Yahoo News show "Through Her Eyes," and shared a story of how a Magic Kingdom employee reached out to her about the poor working conditions at the theme park. So, Disney went to see for herself, and she did not like what she found.

Keep Reading Show less
popular
Wellington District Police

Some animals have no respect for authority. Rogue penguins are disobeying the police in New Zealand, and they can't stop, won't stop.

Two little blue penguins were spotted at Sushi Bi near the Wellington railway station, allegedly trying to nest. The penguins had to cross through busy lanes of traffic running between the harbor and the sushi bar.

The dangerous duo was detained by the police, then released back into Wellington Harbour.

Keep Reading Show less
Nature

Netflix

How much of what we do is influenced by what we see on TV? When it comes to risky behavior, Netflix isn't taking any chances.

After receiving a lot of heat, the streaming platform is finally removing a controversial scenedepicting teen suicide in season one of "13 Reasons Why. The decision comes two years after the show's release after statistics reveal an uptick in teen suicide.

"As we prepare to launch season three later this summer, we've been mindful about the ongoing debate around the show. So on the advice of medical experts, including Dr. Christine Moutier, Chief Medical Officer at the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, we've decided with creator Brian Yorkey and the producers to edit the scene in which Hannah takes her own life from season one," Netflix said in a statement, per The Hollywood Reporter.

Keep Reading Show less
Culture
Magnific Eye / Unsplash

Los Angeles is experiencing a homeless epidemic that was years in the making.

Over the past six years, the unhoused population in the city has risen 75 percent. The city's lack of homeless shelters and affordable housing has forced many who can't afford L.A.'s sky-high rents to live on the streets.

According to LAist, since 2000, renter incomes have decreased by 3 percent while rents have gone up 32 percent.

While the city has launched a $100 million-per-year program to help the problem, rapper, entrepreneur, and actor Jaden Smith has found his own way of responding to the crisis: love.

Keep Reading Show less
Communities