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Broader healthcare provision lowers mortality

All the recent discussions in the USA about the benefits of extending medical care to every single person have prompted many opinions on such an approach. With the NHS free-at-the-point-of-care ethos, medical professionals from the UK have been accused of inherent bias on the subject. Some states in the USA have already increased Medicaid eligibility, leading the way to a more universal system. A recent study in these US states in the 5 years before and after this decision showed significantly reduced all-cause mortality of 6.1% between the two time periods. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the greatest improvements were in poorer areas and in the elderly population. These striking results remind us that the NHS model is still an ideal worth aspiring to.

NEJM 2012;367:1025–34

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