The one-hour in-depth premieres as the nation arrives at the two-year anniversary of the historic passage of The Affordable Care Act in Congress – and days from when the U.S. Supreme Court is expected to review the federal legislation for its constitutionality. He will explore how other nations have addressed the challenges of costs and quality of care, as well as a successful community model within the U.S.
“We Americans need to recognize that there are many areas where we could learn a lot from what other countries are doing. America’s best companies routinely benchmark to global standards. What we’re trying to do in this series is just that – look around the world and ask, ‘what can we learn?’ In the process, we also found areas where we could teach the rest of the world a thing or two.” Zakaria said.
While health care costs in America totaled 17.6 percent of GDP in 2009, according to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, the high cost of health care seems uncorrelated to quality of care. Zakaria reports Americans no longer rank within the top 25 nations for healthy life expectancy or infant mortality.
Put plainly, New Jersey’s Camden Coalition of Healthcare Providers founder and family medicine practitioner, Jeffrey Brenner, MD, says: “We’re spending a whole lot in our country for health care, and we’re not getting our money’s worth.”
For the special, Zakaria also interviews David Goldhill, the president and CEO of the Game Show Network, who penned an editorial for The Atlantic magazine (“How American Health Care Killed My Father,” Sept. 2009); New Yorker magazine’s Atul Gawande, MD; William Hsiao, PhD, an economics professor at Harvard who helped design Taiwan’s health care system; and The Washington Post’s T.R. Reid, author of The Healing of America: A Global Quest for Better, Cheaper, and Fairer Health Care (2010) for insights from his tour of health systems around the world.