Bonjour! I’m Anthony, French chef at Pastreez. Our clients normally ask themselves, the place can I discover macarons close to me? Nicely, our on-line French bakery solved that downside.
On this new, very private weblog publish, I’m going to share my very personal expertise of well being in France and in the US.
I’ve had an open coronary heart surgical procedure again in 2018, between the US and France. I’ve a little bit of expertise in hospitals on each side.
And many household and buddies from France have this “cliché” of well being in the US. However is it true? Has it modified? Is France actually that nice for well being? Right here is my private angle on it. That is an opinion piece: please take it with a grain of salt!
Earlier than I’m going forward, are you aware of Camille’s recording of 180 french sentences used throughout a medical examination in French: it’s fully free and comes with sentences in French translated in English. When you plan on touring to France, it’s possible you’ll wish to test it out!
Again to the topic at hand.
Don’t get sick within the US. Actually?
We’ve got this “cliché” in France about being sick within the US. All of us noticed Michael Moore’s documentary Sicko, the place he was evaluating the well being system in France with the US.
Within the documentary, he was mentioning somebody that has misplaced two fingers in a DIY dwelling accident. And the particular person was requested $20,000 to re-attached the 2 fingers.
In France, it’s “free”. However wait, is it?
Let’s get again to our instance in Sicko. What they overlook to say, is that the one who’s injured shouldn’t be insured.
Would you drive a automotive with out insurance coverage? You shouldn’t, since you can be dependable in case you’re concerned in any accident.
The factor is within the US, at the moment in 2007 earlier than Obamacare, medical insurance was not necessary. So individuals had been free to subscribe (or not) to a medical insurance.
It signifies that, to have extra money month-to-month, you can determine to not enrol in medical insurance. So you would need to pay in full if something occurs to you. However then again, you don’t need to pay the month-to-month charges.
That’s what occurred with that particular person within the documentary.
That $20,000 invoice is the price of such surgical procedure. It’s truly a really comparable price in France!
However the massive distinction is, in France, we normally don’t see that invoice. We don’t see how a lot a surgical procedure prices, or how a lot our insurance coverage covers. I’d say it’s much less “clear”.
Within the US, they’re extra clear about cash basically. They ship you the total invoice, with that massive quantity, exhibiting you what is roofed, and what it’s important to pay out of pocket. It’s not all the time correct although, I needed to name the insurance coverage loads of instances to sq. issues up.
However in my view, it’s all the time good to have choices. The liberty “to not enrol” in insurance coverage comes with penalties. We simply have to be able to face it sooner or later.
However now with Obamacare, since 2010, Individuals should enrol in medical insurance. When you don’t, you get a high-quality in your tax invoice yearly.
Medical insurance: The way it works
Now, you realize that it’s all about being insured. However how does medical insurance work in the US, in comparison with France?
In France, all people has the minimal protection by definition. It’s referred to as “L’Assurance Maladie”.
Actually, you don’t have a selection – It’s routinely debited out of your wage.
And that’s the key distinction to match each methods. Within the US, medical insurance is personal. You get to buy round, similar to grocery.
I wish to make an instance with automotive insurance coverage. In France, you may choose your plan, and choose AXA, Allianz, or some other personal firm.
It’s the identical factor within the US for well being. You’ll be able to choose your plan and your insurance coverage.
High quality comparability (my opinion)
I’ve had open coronary heart surgical procedure again in 2018. Because it was transthoracic surgical procedure with valve alternative, that was an enormous deal.
I used to be nonetheless in France on the time, however I used to be transitioning into the US. So I had the surgical procedure in France, however monitored within the US all through the years.
I’d say my French surgeon was actually wonderful. However the public hospital I used to be in was… not cool!
I used to be operated on on the European hospital Georges Pompidou. The air conditioner was not working. The mattress was not snug. I used to be transferred a number of instances as a result of monitoring was not working..
It was a nightmare. General, being French and having been in France for 30 years, I don’t suppose our system ought to be taken for instance as a complete.
Hospitals within the US are a lot better in high quality. Once more, that is my private expertise! I’ll provide you with a really exact instance.
To watch my coronary heart concern, I’ve to do an ETO (échographie Trans-Oesophagienne). Principally, the physician pushes a digital camera into your throat for about 15 min.
And I’ve performed ETOs in each France and the US.
In France: Solely native anaesthesia.. It signifies that I’ve to swallow a digital camera, and mainly suffocate for 15 min. Not enjoyable, in all probability the worst medical examination ever.
Within the US: Understanding that have, I used to be actually scared to do it within the US. I even requested the physician to ensure it’s beneath common anaesthesia.
They thought I used to be loopy. They advised me: “In fact it’s common anaesthesia!”. There isn’t a native anaesthesia for such exams within the US. Nicely in France, that’s what we nonetheless do.. ouch.
Is Free well being a factor?
Quick reply: No. In France, it appears to be free. As a result of in case you go to a public hospital, and also you present your “carte vitale” (public insurance coverage card), it’s probably you received’t pay a dime, and also you received’t see a invoice.
And that’s a very good level. However we have to have a look at the total image. The “Assurance maladie” is debited out of your wage, bear in mind?
You pay extra tax in France than within the US. That’s how they make up the distinction.
Within the US, you’ve got what’s referred to as a “copay”, and a “most out of pocket”. The copay is what you pay for a physician’s go to. The utmost out of pocket is apparent: It’s the utmost quantity you may be billed in a full yr. That is just like the cap to keep away from getting a $20,000 invoice as talked about earlier.
If you store round for medical insurance, you may “play” with these two quantities, and it’ll enhance or lower your month-to-month cost.
For sure, I used to be utterly misplaced once I arrived in California!
In France, a very good factor is that you simply don’t actually need to “fear” about medical insurance. Right here within the US, it’s important to choose a well being plan that fits your wants.
All collectively, I choose the US system, as a result of it offers you extra freedom and transparency about what you get, and what you pay. It’s not excellent in any respect, but when I’ve to decide on, I’d choose the US system.
One other instance as an example that, I used to be in a bodily remedy hospital named Corentin Celton in France, after my coronary heart surgical procedure. I spent a couple of month there.
And to be protected, I took “une mutuelle”, which is additional protection out of your primary “assurance maladie”. That approach, I used to be pondering I used to be absolutely coated for that necessary to heal.
I used to be flawed: I received a invoice from the hospital of practically 1,000€! As a result of apparently, the room was not coated. Ouch. It might need been higher to speak to me about it first to ensure I acknowledge that price.
Expertise and customer support
Medical doctors are very expert in France! For many, changing into a physician is a vocation to assist others.
However the truth that well being is financed by the federal government, public hospitals’ budgets are getting tight. So the extent of care is getting decrease and decrease.
The hospital buildings are usually not properly maintained. I can inform with no A/C after a coronary heart surgical procedure with 80°F in levels (30°C+)!
Within the US, medical doctors are usually not essentially much less expert. However customer support is healthier, appointments and timelines as properly. No want to attend for weeks for a specialist appointment, it’s normally inside every week or so.
One factor that shocked my spouse and I once we first arrived in California, is that right here, you don’t get to see your physician solely once you’re sick.
Our physician was like a “coach” to ensure we’re in good well being. For instance, each 3 to six months, we’d get a blood take a look at to see our degree of nutritional vitamins, ldl cholesterol and such.
Then the physician would advise us if we wanted to alter something in our meals, every day routine, and so on. We thought it was nice to assist us preserve in fine condition!
General, I can say it’s two very totally different well being methods. I used to be utterly misplaced once I first needed to cope with well being right here within the US.
Primarily as a result of right here, it’s very corresponding to automotive insurance coverage: You get to buy round. In France, you don’t need to “fear” about well being, since it’s taken care of by the federal government by means of “assurance maladie”.
However I’d say that high quality of well being, timelines to get appointments, high quality of the hospitals, it’s higher in the US.
That’s it! You bought my take about well being within the US vs France. There may be a lot extra to say about it, and I’m positive you’ve got your individual expertise with it!