FACT-CHECKING ‘SICKO’….It’s not often major news outlets fact-check documentaries, but Michael Moore’s not just another documentary filmmaker, and healthcare is not just another public policy. So, I suppose it’s not a big surprise that CNN would give “Sicko” some close scrutiny.
As it turns out, the network gives the movie a clean bill of health.
Moore says that the U.S. spends more of its gross domestic product on health care than any other country.
Again, that’s true. The United States spends more than 15 percent of its GDP on health care — no other nation even comes close to that number. France spends about 11 percent, and Canadians spend 10 percent.
Like Moore, we also found that more money does not equal better care. Both the French and Canadian systems rank in the Top 10 of the world’s best health-care systems, according to the World Health Organization. The United States comes in at No. 37. The rankings are based on general health of the population, access, patient satisfaction and how the care’s paid for.
Indeed, CNN’s analysis found no substantive flaws or inaccuracies in Moore’s film, but nevertheless concluded, “As Americans continue to spend $2 trillion a year on health care, everyone agrees on one point: Things need to change, and it will take more than a movie to figure out how to get there.”
Perhaps, but as Matt Yglesias noted, CNN’s own fact-checking piece clearly shows the way by pointing to the same deficiencies in the U.S. system that Moore identified in “Sicko.”
[I]t’s not that hard to figure out. France and Canada both have two difference systems of health care delivery both of which are cheaper than the US system and both of which are more effective. What’s more, these aren’t obscure countries. Lots of people have heard of France. Lots of people have heard of Canada. How hard is it for them to just write the words “Michael Moore is right; American health care would be improved if we adopted French methods instead”?