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Inequality Kills Us All: COVID-19’s Health Lessons for the World
The complex answer to why the United States does so poorly in health measures has at its base one pervasive issue: The United States has by far the highest levels of inequality of all the rich countries. Inequality Kills Us All details how living in a society with entrenched hierarchies increases the negative effects of illnesses for everyone.
The antidote must start, Stephen Bezruchka recognizes, with a broader awareness of the nature of the problem, and out of that understanding policies that eliminate these inequalities: A fair system of taxation, so that the rich are paying their share; support for child well-being, including paid parental leave, continued monthly child support payments, and equitable educational opportunities; universal access to healthcare; and a guaranteed income for all Americans. The aim is to have a society that treats everyone well—and health will follow.
Dr. Stephen Bezruchka is on the faculty of the Department of Health Systems and Population Health at the University of Washington. He worked for many years as an emergency physician in Seattle. He worked in Nepal for more than a decade where he helped set up a community health project a week’s walk from the road. He also established a remote district hospital for training Nepali doctors whom he supervised. He is the author of Inequality Kills Us All: COVID-19’s Health Lessons for the World.
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