I would like to point something out to Americans. In Australia, we have KICK ARSE health coverage. It's far more efficient than the American system (I could get appointments in Australia much faster than in the USA under private health insurance), and the level of care is just as good, if not better, because our doctors aren't salesmen for pharmaceuticals.
How much do we pay for this system, which, compared with the American clusterfuck I have experienced for the last six and a half years, seems like Utopia? Surely the government rapes us on tax day? The Medicare Levy which covers our healthcare is 1.5% of our income over $6,000. If you earn $40,000 p.a., say, the total cost of your health coverage is $510 FOR THE ENTIRE YEAR. Think about that for a minute. In addition, doctor's visits and hospital stays are free, and medications are much, MUCH cheaper than they are in the US.
Why? Because we have single payer. We're evil socialists, and the government actively invests in our health, so that it negotiates with pharmaceuticals and other players in the health care system to get better prices for its citizens.
I am so sick of people saying socialized medicine is bad. It's AWESOME. People who are against it are IDIOTS.
(Reposted from my Facebook Notes.)
My friend Jason from Australia (a health policy analyst) also offers the following illustrative graphs:
(Source: National Health and Hospitals Reform Commission Final Report 2009)