Chapter

Why the United States Is Not Number One in Health

Ichiro Kawachi

in Healthy, Wealthy, and Fair

Published in print April 2005 | ISBN: 9780195170665
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199850204 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195170665.003.0013
Why the United States Is Not Number One in Health

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This chapter outlines the possible explanations of why the United States' health status ranks near the bottom among the 13 most economically advanced countries in the world. First, the American public may be ignorant of its dismal health performance, because the issue does not receive regular coverage on the nightly news in the way that economic performance does. Second, even if the public is aware of the United States' health performance, some might not care about their relative rank compared to other rich nations, so long as average life expectancy continues to improve. Third, the public might ignore the problem because it is misinformed about the causes of the country's poor health performance and, hence, what can be done about it.

Keywords: United States; health status; health performance; health; life expectancy

Chapter.  6146 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: US Politics

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