Broken U.S. Healthcare System Ranks Lowest, Despite Highest Costs

Press Release | Centers for Integrative Medicine and Healing | August 12, 2015

The U.S. spends more and ranks worse on healthcare than any other nation. Centers for Integrative Medicine and Healing offers a solution through preventive medicine that costs less and yields higher success rates.

(Providence, RI) August 12, 2015—Despite spending dramatically more on healthcare than any other nation, the United States has not produced a high-quality healthcare system. In fact, the U.S. ranks last or next-to-last when assessed for efficiency, quality, access and overall healthcare, according to various reports. Centers for Integrative Medicine and Healing ( (CIMH), the nation’s leading and most advanced integrative medicine clinic, cites the Commonwealth Fund 2013 report, which states that the U.S. underperforms in several dimensions of healthcare, compared to Australia, Canada, France, Germany, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. The U.S. ranked 11th in overall healthcare, efficiency, equity and healthy lives. (1)

The only area in which the U.S. achieved top ranking was in per capita health expenditures, as 2011’s $8,508 figure far exceeded the rest. The next-highest per capita expenditure was Norway ($5,669), while the lowest was New Zealand at $3,182. (1)

Additional studies reinforce America’s declining health status. A recent report by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) revealed that while U.S. life expectancy at birth increased by nearly nine years from 1960 to 2010, Japan’s grew by over 15 years, and other OECD countries averaged an 11‑year increase. The U.S. lags behind, despite spending at least two-and-a-half times more than the 33 OCED countries’ per capita average healthcare expenditure of $3,268. (2)

Why does exorbitant healthcare spending in the U.S. produce such poor results? According to CIMH, the American healthcare system relies too heavily on high-priced prescription drugs, with high development and advertising costs that are passed on to consumers. Moreover, these drugs often provide only temporary relief from symptoms—not a cure for disease.

Another contributing factor is the proliferation of high-tech medical devices, such as laparoscopes and surgery robots. These new devices—with their staggering price tags—are replacing traditional methods that often worked better. Most studies show that patient outcomes do not justify the use of most of these million-dollar tools. (1)

When it comes to supporting healthy lifestyle choices, the U.S. falls behind other OECD countries. We lack policies that increase alcohol taxes to discourage use. And inadequate prevention efforts have contributed to the highest overweight and obese rates among OECD countries, which continue to grow, rather than stabilizing as in England, France and Italy. (2)

CIMH medical director Dr. Tad Sztykowski asserts that if this seemingly acceptable course is not altered, America’s healthcare decline will only accelerate. “Contrary to widely-held beliefs, America is far from the best in the world for healthcare. The data and evidence simply do not support that assumption,” he said. “Every day, I see the results of our broken system, and patients have been paying the price in both out-of-pocket costs and poor health.”

CIMH is tackling the high cost of healthcare with preventive care, a more sustainable and effective approach that can significantly cut costs. Through integrative medicine, a combination of Western medicine and treatments based in Oriental medicine, CIMH doctors address the causes of chronic pain, illness, obesity and disease with proven natural methods, not by masking symptoms with medication and extraneous treatments. CIMH patients enjoy better health without the endless cycle and side effects of prescription drugs.

“Integrative medicine is the solution to America’s systematic, reactionary approach of expensive medication and disease management,” said Dr. Sztykowski. “If we instead proactively prevent disease, Americans will again be healthy, and healthcare costs will decline. When we shift our focus to preventive care, America will again have the world’s best healthcare.”

For more information on the benefits of integrative medicine and CIMH, please visit

About CIMH:

Established in 1990, Centers for Integrative Medicine and Healing (CIMH) is the nation’s leading and most advanced integrative medicine clinic. Integrative medicine combines centuries-old Oriental medicine modalities with current Western diagnostics. Located in Providence, Rhode Island, CIMH has a high success rate and thousands of satisfied patients. CIMH is headed by Medical Director Dr. Tad Sztykowski, and staffed with an elite team of doctor-specialists. The CIMH website hosts an abundance of useful information, including a Virtual Symptom IndicatorTM that allows users to communicate interactively with CIMH doctors and care managers about their areas of concern. Please refer to for further information.

  1. “Mirror, Mirror on the Wall, 2014 Update: How the U.S. Health Care System Compares Internationally;” The Commonwealth Fund, June 16, 2014;accessed August 5, 2015.
  2. “Health Costs: How the U.S. Compares With Other Countries;” PBS Newshour, October 22, 2012; accessed August 7, 2015.

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