So Why Are We Benchmarking Health Care v. France?

This is awesome, from Carpe Diem:


On a purchasing power parity basis, France, Japan, and Germany would all be the poorest states in the United States, based on per capita GDP.  People on the coasts don't benchmark their education or health care spending against Mississippi, except perhaps to make the case that Mississippi is spending too little.  So why do they benchmark their spending against Germany or France.  Of course we spend more on health care per capita - we spend more than these countries per capita on everything from TV's to cars to movie tickets.


  1. Mike C.:

    Lower per capita GDP than Mississippi ? Well, maybe our current rulers can fix that for them...

  2. Michael:

    It's interesting you brought up France. Here's France's immigrant health care requirements. I would guess it applies to illegals too.

    For many of those planning to move to France in the future, or who arrived in the country from 23 November, 2007, full private health insurance is now a must. Private health insurance is quite different from the current complementary insurance 'top up' policies because the underwriter assumes all the risk (up to policy limits) less any excesses payable by the insured.

  3. me:

    Interesting chart, but I fear it's more of an indication that the USD is way overvalued than anything else. Then again, here's to hoping I am wrong.

  4. Ironman:

    You might be more interested in the following post, in which we presented a full regression analysis correlating health expenditures per capita and GDP per capita for 2004, breaking the U.S, Canada and Australia into subnational units to better compare them with smaller OECD nations:

    Redefining the Health Care Debate, Part 2

    Here's how what we found was described elsewhere:

    The blog Political Calculations has posted an interesting analysis of GDP per capita versus health spending per capita in the U.S. and OECD. This is the first analysis to separately identify individual states in the U.S. and individual provinces in Canada and Australia. It produces strikingly different conclusions from the standard linear regression analysis that has been used for years to show that U.S. health spending is far above where it “should” be relative to other countries even after accounting for its higher GDP per capita.

  5. K:

    Ironman: thanks for the link to Political Calculations.

    I hadn't encountered them before and the material looks quite useful. It will be a week before I can really examine the site and the health articles.

  6. epobirs:


    First I've heard of your site but it took only a moment's perusal to see it merits a bookmark.