Cubans live 2 months longer than Americans. Or, if you want to be picky, it’s a wash, and Cubans and Americans live about as long as each other.
Cuba’s rates of maternal mortality (a very important figure), infant mortality and child mortality rates are above that of the 3rd World and are at about the level of the 1st World. In that sense, Cuba is a 1st world country.
What is incredible is this:
Cuba spends 4 cents on health care to every one of our dollars. Yes, Cuba gets better outcomes for 96% less cost. Does that make any sense at all?
32% of all US health care dollars go for overhead, while with Medicare, only 2% is spent on overhead. This is probably why the rightwing wants to get rid of Medicare: it’s too efficient. That 2% figure really gets their goat. If they wiped out Medicare and forced the elderly to buy their own, that 2% would go up to 32%.
The Republican Party is the true party of waste and bureaucracy. The US has the most bureaucratic health care system in the world. There are 1,500 different health care insurance companies, each providing their own complicated plans. The result is a complete mess.
For profit medicine leads to overtreatment. That’s all there is to it. Meanwhile, while doctors and administrators and executives get rich, the US system kills and kills again. In 2008, reduced access to care killed over 2,000 US veterans. If all 23.7 million US women aged 50-70 were shifted from nonprofits to for-profit plans, the result 5,925 extra breast cancer deaths a year.
For profit medicine is simply legalized murder. The capitalist kills because it is profitable to do so. If limiting his profits means saving lives, the capitalist will always refuse to limit his profits in order to save lives. If killing people means the capitalist can reap more profits, then the capitalist will kill in the blink of an eye.
Capitalism is always about killing people, and capitalists are always killers. It’s part of the system. The only reason that they kill as few as they do is due to anti-capitalists* at the state level who regulate the capitalists so they kill a minimal number of people.
*In a capitalist society, the only way to have a decent society and not a 3rd world capitalist shithole is to populate the state apparatus with anti-capitalists, defined here as those willing to regulate capital in the public interest by placing limits on capitalists’ profits and reducing their profit-taking.