Think the NHS is in poor health? Try being ill under the US system – Arwa Mahdawi

There are, I have found, many advantages to being a Brit in America. My accent makes me seem 20% hotter and more intelligent than I really am and I can get into places by insinuating that I know the Queen (yeah, we hang out all the time in Brixton). However, one definite disadvantage of living in the US is the state of its healthcare system.

While cost is its largest pain point, complexity is another: the system is geared more towards patience than patients. When I went to elect my benefits at my last job I had to choose between a Silver PPO 2000 or an HMO 40/60 (Gold) or a PCHP EPO or a POS 20 or a HDHP plan. I had no idea what any of that meant and, after attempting to unpick acronyms for a while, I just gave up and chose one at random. The bureaucracy escalates from there: you have to fill out about 15 different forms when you go to see a doctor, and get an endless stream of letters from your insurer. I’m not sure what these letters say, as I normally stick them in a drawer and hope they go away…

Full article on The Guardian 3 May 2016.