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Health care wait time in Europe

is4junk          4 November 2015 04:50 PM

If heath care wait times are too long (say 100 years) then this is equivalent to 0% health care. Now some of these wait times are only 150d on average. But assuming by the time you need a hip, knee, or eye surgery that you are old, what is the actual percentage healthcare being provided. Now assuming that surgery is done with a fair queue (first in - first out) it should be an easy calculation to see the remaining life expectancy and average age of the afflicted people. But what if the queue isn't fair? What if your remaining life expectancy is factored in? What is the actual percentage of health care provided?

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VoiceOfRa 4 November 2015 09:38 PM

Healthcare wait time doesn't just mean that everyone gets the same healthcare, only a year later. It means people put of care or don't both applying at all. Otherwise, the same forces that caused the wait in the first place would cause it to increase indefinitely.


aliad 5 November 2015 12:22 AM

The type of surgery referenced in the linked arrival are quality of life issues, that is, you aren't going to die if you don't get the surgery but you aren't going to be able to function to your normal standards either. Now people who are blind or permanently wheelchair bound can have good and fulfilling lives, but they have usually gone to significant effort to learn skills and arrange their lives in such a way as to rout around the missing capacity. So I'll assume people waiting for elective surgery. Even so there is still a lot of enjoyment to be had out of life even with cataracts of a non-functioning knee. I'll so the guesstimate of 50% for the amount of health utility you are missing out on while you wait for the surgery. (actually this will vary wildly by the individual circumstances, but picking a number right in the middle will probably be relevant to someone.)
Now when my husband was getting knee replacement surgery he was told the artificial knee would last about 15 years before needing more surge to replace it. He was also told the ideal time to have the surgery was when you were estimated to have about 15 ears to live so you got the most use out of the replacement knee but didn't end up needing a second surgery. So I'll go with an example of someone with 15 years left to live.

((15*365) -(150*.5))/(15*365)=.986
So in this example my somewhat dodgy asthmatic skills show the patient waiting 150 days is getting about 98.6% of the heath utility that would be available to them if they got the surgery immediately. Which doesn't seem all that bad. But the health utility this patient is missing out on is the health utility while they are relatively young which is probably better quality health utility than what they will have towards the end of their life expectancy. Besides, waiting around for bureaucracy is as annoying as heck.

Now someone with a shorter life expectancy would be being deprived of a greater share of their remaining potential health utility, but at the same time a surgery done for them would be wasting potential health utility the surgery could have provided someone who could have used all 15 years. (And as Voice of Ra points out the only reason for the wait time is that health care is a limited resource.) So I'm not sure how to evaluate that situation.