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Is Signapore's healthcare the answer for US?

DoctorZhiva90
Posts: 27
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12/3/2011 8:47:19 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
After being largely in the dark about the raging health care debate, I decided to do some research of my own. What I've come away with is that the US should not copy the Canadian or British universal health care model, but rather the Signaporean model. This is a system that can be loosely classified as universal, but has many private, free-market aspects as well. Perhaps this statistic will best sum it up: The US spends around 16% of the GDP on healthcare. Canada is about 10%. Signapore: 3.7%. Also consider that when the WHO did its healthcare system rankings back in 2000, UK was 18th, Canada 30th, and US 37th. Signapore sat high above them all at 6th.

Signapore accomplishes all this while having half the per-capita rate of doctors and nurses. So how do they do it? It's simple: it's one of the few systems where health decisions are truly in the hands of the patients and doctors, compared to insurers (US) or government bureacrats (UK and Canada). There are several key components to the system:
1. Subsidization of health costs occurs with treatment in public hospitals, andis based on patient's income. The subsidization rate ranges from about 50-80% for wage-earners. Unemployed individuals' subsidies are determined by their property values, and unemployed homeless individuals get a full subsidy.
2. Medisave, which is part of a large mandatory pension program, is the portion of this program which sets aside a fixed portion of wages towards medical expenses. The pension program may sound bad, since it typically requires 20% of the wages to be paid into it. However, this pension plan also requires a 13% contribution from employers, and the costs that it funds include housing, retirement, and education. To me, this seems like it would encourage some financial sense and saving, while still keeping money in the hands of the people. The money in the Medisave account is the source of funding for patients in daily hospital charges, fees for seeing a doctor, and surgery. Medisave money is transferrable among immediate family members as well.
3. Medishield is a government-sponsored insurance plan which individuals purchase (or choose private options) which covers "catastrophic events" like a heart attack or stroke and the associated treatment. There is also Eldershield, the insurance for those who are significantly disabled and elderly (unlike Medicare, which in this country even Warren Buffett is eligible to receive).
4. Medifund is the safety net for people who cannot afford health costs. Keep in mind that a large portion of health costs in Signapore are government-subsidized, so the need for this is not as great as you might think. This is funded by an initial amount of $150 million that was implemented in 1993, with budget surpluses providing additional contributions.

This system is one of the main reasons that Signapore continuously has a budget surplus, along with a comparatively low top tax rate of 20%.

Basically, this seems like the perfect blend of limited government oversight (so that insurance/drug companies don't make obscene amounts of money), but there is also a great deal of control that is left with the people. The government's main role is to require people to save for health costs. Its role is much less than the traditional national health care system.

So instead of saying that the US should have health care more like Canada, why not push for the Signapore model? I know that Signapore is a smaller country, but its clear that our current system would fail any country small or large. Plus, Obamacare just transitions control of the insurance industry to the government instead of insurance companies. To my knowledge, this is one of the only systems that allows for healthcare to truly be in the hands of doctors and patients - an often repeated pipe dream which often seems to be an unattainable goal. At the very least, the US should experiment with this system at the state level, since the average state population is comparable to Signapore's figure of 4.6 million.
jimtimmy
Posts: 3,953
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12/3/2011 9:04:13 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
Interesting fact... the Singaporean System is the most private in the world. It is 66% Privately Financed... In the US, the Health Care system is only 52% privately financed...

So, the Singaporean system is much more private than the US's or any other system... and it is also cheaper than any other system
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DoctorZhiva90
Posts: 27
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12/3/2011 9:14:44 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 12/3/2011 9:04:13 PM, jimtimmy wrote:
Interesting fact... the Singaporean System is the most private in the world. It is 66% Privately Financed... In the US, the Health Care system is only 52% privately financed...

So, the Singaporean system is much more private than the US's or any other system... and it is also cheaper than any other system

Interesting, where'd you find that? That's pretty interesting to note though. Obviously, when our government is spending so much on health care, it makes no sense to put a huge amount of control in the government's hands.
DanT
Posts: 5,693
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12/3/2011 9:19:15 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 12/3/2011 8:47:19 PM, DoctorZhiva90 wrote:
Also consider that when the WHO did its healthcare system rankings back in 2000, UK was 18th, Canada 30th, and US 37th. Signapore sat high above them all at 6th.

I don't have much faith in WHO to start with, and you just shook my faith even more.

America has much more advanced healthcare than singapore.

Also we are not talking about healthcare reform, we are ralking about health care reform.

healthcare is the preservation of mental and physical health by preventing or treating illness through services offered by the health profession
http://wordnetweb.princeton.edu...

health care is social insurance for the ill and injured
http://wordnetweb.princeton.edu...

Government run health care, hurts the quality of healthcare.

The reason health care cost so much, is that healthcare cost allot. The reason healthcare cost allot is supply vs demand.

The supply is low so the prices increase. We need to increase the number of doctors, and the supply of medication. Tort reform is more likely to do that than anything.

We need to first lower cost by increasing the supply, before increasing the demand. Otherwise the supply would run out faster.

Health care reform doesn't fix the underlining problem, it just pays everyone's medical bills with the tax payer's money.
"Chemical weapons are no different than any other types of weapons."~Lordknukle
DoctorZhiva90
Posts: 27
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12/3/2011 9:36:01 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 12/3/2011 9:19:15 PM, DanT wrote:
At 12/3/2011 8:47:19 PM, DoctorZhiva90 wrote:
Also consider that when the WHO did its healthcare system rankings back in 2000, UK was 18th, Canada 30th, and US 37th. Signapore sat high above them all at 6th.

I don't have much faith in WHO to start with, and you just shook my faith even more.

America has much more advanced healthcare than singapore.

Also we are not talking about healthcare reform, we are ralking about health care reform.

healthcare is the preservation of mental and physical health by preventing or treating illness through services offered by the health profession
http://wordnetweb.princeton.edu...

health care is social insurance for the ill and injured
http://wordnetweb.princeton.edu...

Government run health care, hurts the quality of healthcare.

The reason health care cost so much, is that healthcare cost allot. The reason healthcare cost allot is supply vs demand.

The supply is low so the prices increase. We need to increase the number of doctors, and the supply of medication. Tort reform is more likely to do that than anything.

We need to first lower cost by increasing the supply, before increasing the demand. Otherwise the supply would run out faster.

Health care reform doesn't fix the underlining problem, it just pays everyone's medical bills with the tax payer's money.

I'm not a liberal by any means, but I have to ask you this: Why does it matter how advanced a healthcare system is when it is so unaffordable by so much of the population? It's clear that our system right now is a corporatist healthcare system that is monopolized by the insurance companies. Also, Signapore is not a third world country. Plus, what do you measure "advanced" by? Signapore has an infant mortality rate 1/3 of what the US has, along with a life expectancy of 82 years compared to the US's 78 years.

I'm also wondering about tort reform and whether that would have a significant effect on costs. How would this effect overall costs at the patient level?
DanT
Posts: 5,693
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12/3/2011 9:52:32 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 12/3/2011 9:36:01 PM, DoctorZhiva90 wrote:
At 12/3/2011 9:19:15 PM, DanT wrote:
At 12/3/2011 8:47:19 PM, DoctorZhiva90 wrote:
Also consider that when the WHO did its healthcare system rankings back in 2000, UK was 18th, Canada 30th, and US 37th. Signapore sat high above them all at 6th.

I don't have much faith in WHO to start with, and you just shook my faith even more.

America has much more advanced healthcare than singapore.

Also we are not talking about healthcare reform, we are ralking about health care reform.

healthcare is the preservation of mental and physical health by preventing or treating illness through services offered by the health profession
http://wordnetweb.princeton.edu...

health care is social insurance for the ill and injured
http://wordnetweb.princeton.edu...

Government run health care, hurts the quality of healthcare.

The reason health care cost so much, is that healthcare cost allot. The reason healthcare cost allot is supply vs demand.

The supply is low so the prices increase. We need to increase the number of doctors, and the supply of medication. Tort reform is more likely to do that than anything.

We need to first lower cost by increasing the supply, before increasing the demand. Otherwise the supply would run out faster.

Health care reform doesn't fix the underlining problem, it just pays everyone's medical bills with the tax payer's money.

I'm not a liberal by any means, but I have to ask you this: Why does it matter how advanced a healthcare system is when it is so unaffordable by so much of the population? It's clear that our system right now is a corporatist healthcare system that is monopolized by the insurance companies.

mono means one. There are multiple companies. a Monopoly would be if there was only one provider.

Also, Signapore is not a third world country. Plus, what do you measure "advanced" by? Signapore has an infant mortality rate 1/3 of what the US has, along with a life expectancy of 82 years compared to the US's 78 years.

Each state in the union has their own healthcare system, and their own culture, own environment, and own state government. When you generalize all 50 states like that, you cause inaccuracies.

In NH
* We have no seat belt law for adults
*We have no motorcycle helmet law.
*We are not required to buy Insurance
* We have a low rate of uninsured population at 10.4%
* We have a low premature death rate with 5,792 years of potential life lost before age 75 per 100,000 population.
*We have a low percentage of children in poverty at 10.5% of persons under age 18
*We are ranked number 3 in the American Health Ranking by the United Health Foundation

group other states into the statistics and NH looks worse, because you are looking at other states stats as well. Including the states with state run healthcare.

I'm also wondering about tort reform and whether that would have a significant effect on costs. How would this effect overall costs at the patient level?

Many doctors no longer deliver babies because of the high risk of being sued. Because of frivolous law suites we have a doctor shortage, and hospitals raise prices to cover lawyer expenses.

When there is a doctor shortage the cost goes up because of supply vs demand. An increase in patients is an increase in frivolous law suites, and thus a further decrease in doctors and increase in cost.

Tort reform lowers the cost of healthcare.

Also many drug companies have frivolous law suites filed against them, and they lose money, and the drugs they provide go off the market because of bad publicity. One of my prescriptions that I've taken for years stopped being manufactured because it was no longer generating a profit, and was costing them more money than they brought in.
"Chemical weapons are no different than any other types of weapons."~Lordknukle
16kadams
Posts: 10,497
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12/7/2011 6:51:07 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
well people say that Canada does well due to national healthcare, but Singapore wins because of privatization. Well lets follow their model and defeat the socialized medicine argument.
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