Data supports effectiveness of publicly financed health care

To the Editor:

John McClaughry's recent letter (7/15) dismisses a 2014 Commonwealth Fund report which shows that the United States health care system ranks poorly when compared to those of ten other industrialized countries. "Aside from hard data on morbidity and spending," Mr. McClaughry asserts, the rest of the data for the report came from "shaky phone survey 'evidence.'"

In fact, morbidity and spending are big deals - they indicate how healthy we are, and how much our health care costs us. So, if "hard data" on countries with publicly financed health care systems indicates that they do better than us at keeping people healthy, and do so at significantly less cost, then we should certainly pay attention.

Ellen Oxfeld

Middlebury, Vt.

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