A new report from the OECD has revealed that 20% of healthcare costs are wasted in OECD nations.
According to the report, around one fifth of all money spent on healthcare makes either zero or a minimal contribution to health outcomes.
Says Agnès Couffinhal – a senior economist and the author of the report, “Governments could spend 20 percent less on health care and still improve patients’ health.”
Furthermore, the report says 1 out of 10 patients are unnecessarily harmed at the point of care, and a 10% of all hospital costs are spent on correcting preventable correctable errors and infections caught by patients in the hospital.
The report also notes excessive “regulatory obstacles” are preventing the more widespread adoption of generic (lower cost) pharmaceutical drugs – keeping prices artificially high.
Report shows politicians don’t need to keep raising taxes
We often hear how “uncontrollable expenditures” require higher and higher taxes. Yet, the OECD report shows the incredible waste within the system.
The report is worth quoting at length:
“Yet, a considerable part of this health expenditure makes little or no contribution to improving people’s health. In some cases, it even results in worse health outcomes. Countries could potentially spend significantly less on health care with no impact on health system performance, or on health outcomes.”
We can expect that just as much money is wasted throughout government – money taken off your paycheque and thrown down the drain.
The report – which you can view in full here – is a wakeup call to the need for a smaller, more efficient government that shows respect for taxpayers money.
Reducing government spending and lowering taxes is possible, and we can improve services at the same time. What it will require is more accountability, more efficiency, and an open mind to potential of new ways of doing things.
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