French Health Care Expert: France's System Broken, Should Copy US; Media Yawn

August 27th, 2007 7:56 AM
Magnet by Souvenirs de Paris

Alert Michael Moore! Both he and the World Health Organization say France has the best health care system in the world, and America's system is barely better than Slovenia's. However, French professor Alice Teil not only said the French system is “not sustainable anymore,” but copying parts of America's could save it.

Teil turned to a privately-owned hospital in Utah after a survey of international health care experts ranked Salt Lake City's Intermountain Health Care the number one hospital in the world. You would think that a media so hyper-worried about the “broken” US health care system would report the encouraging news, but other than some bare bones local coverage, this story was ignored.

Maybe it was ignored because Teil's startling description of France's situation did not match the media's typical positive depiction of “free” health care. The earliest online report of Teil's trip was a brief August 22 article posted on Salt Lake City radio station KCPW's website, and it did not stick to the usual MSM script (bold mine throughout):

"It's true we really have good access, but what if the system is not sustainable anymore?" says Teil. "It's going to break. It's going to blow. And then no more accessibility for anybody."
Tiel says the cost of France's socialized health care is growing faster than its economy. Workers pay about fifty percent of their paycheck each month into healthcare, retirement and unemployment and more companies are outsourcing jobs to avoid those costs. Quality of care also suffers in France, says Teil, because hospitals and doctors resist government requirements to report their success and failures.
By contrast, Tiel says privately-owned hospitals in the U.S. are motivated to measure and report their quality of care, which leads to better care.

As of 6 am Monday, the MSM hadn't reported this story. The only coverage was KCPW's Wednesday piece and a Sunday August 26 article in Salt Lake City's Deseret Morning News. Not even the Salt Lake Tribune covered this. That's five days for the MSM to notice this under-reported side of the “free” health care story.

Considering America's aging population and earlier Democratic stabs at socialism (the failing Medicare and Social Security), why wouldn't the media find Teil's opinions vitally important and interview her about France's ailing health care system, which she condemned as having "no incentives to be the best?" Good thing the Morning News spoke to her:

It was a democratic ideal that worked well when there was enough money to pay for it, says Teil, but it has become problematic as costs have risen, baby boomers have aged and the economy has stalled.
Maybe it's time to rethink the extent of France's notion of egalite when it comes to, for example, providing 100 percent of the costs for knee replacements and other "comfort services," she says. "We need to raise those issues to the population, because it's not sustainable anymore."

Contrary to the media standard portrayal of top-rated French health care, Teil stated that the system of “free” unlimited care requires high taxes, and with unlimited care, including costly sex-change operations, in vitro fertilization and alternative medicine, France has a dying system and should look to America for a fix, especially now that the French protested rationing benefits and the government stopped bailing out over-budget public hospitals.

As far as Democrats and advocates of “free” health care are concerned, it's a good thing that the media ignored a story about the sorry state of the "best" health care system in the world.


Contact Lynn at tvisgoodforyou2 AT yahoo DOT com