Introduction to Health in the United States and Abroad

What you’ll learn to do: analyze health care in the United States and abroad

One person with latex gloves on is holding another persons hand while they use a medical device to prick the finger for blood.

Figure 1. A patient has their blood glucose tested on World Diabetes Day (Photo courtesy of Gia Willow Alexa Annermarken/flickr)

Health in the United States is a complex and often contradictory issue. On the one hand, as one of the wealthiest nations, the United States fares well in health comparisons with the rest of the world. However, the United States also lags behind almost every industrialized country in terms of providing care to all of its citizens, as well as in the comparative cost-effectiveness of its healthcare system. The following sections examine different aspects of health in the United States and how this compares with general trends in global health.

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