What Countries Have Universal Health Care?

A few nights ago, I watched Michael Moore’s new documentary, SiCKO, which focuses its crosshair on the health care industry in the United States. At one point in the movie, Mr. Moore claims that the United States is the only “westernized” country without universal health care. Is that true?

First, what does he mean by “westernized”? Defining the “western world” can be subjective, and definitions will vary depending on what criteria is used. Are you defining it from a cultural standpoint? Political? Economical? Perhaps this is why Mr. Moore felt comfortable making such a broad generalization. Is it even possible to truly define what the “western world” really is?

Okay, forget the western world. (I think I know what he meant anyway.) What countries on our good green Earth provide some sort of universal health care for their citizens? Here they are:

Countries in blue have some type of universal health care. Countries in green are currently attempting to implement some type of universal health care. Orange countries have universal health coverage provided by United States war funding. Source. Click to enlarge.

Afghanistan*, Argentina, Austria, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Cuba, Costa Rica, Cyprus, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Iraq*, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Oman, Portugal, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Spain, Sweden, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Ukraine and the United Kingdom

*Universal health coverage provided by United States war funding

There you go. Keep in mind: this is a simple list of countries that have some sort of publicly sponsored health care system. For instance, Sri Lanka may be far from having a true, working universal health care system like France, but prescription drugs are provided by a government-owned drug manufacturer. This qualifies as “some sort of publicly sponsored, universal health care system.”