Hey Wouter, I don't think ironman ws referring to the quality of medicine in the social system, but rather the availability. There is no doubt in my mind the quality of Dr's that can perform certain proceedures is about equal on both sides of the pond. They have recently run some documentaries over here, comparing the 2 systems, and what appeared to be the main gripe (this was Canada and the UK's system vs the US system), was the waiting time, especially for certain very critical proceedures that may mean life and death. They showe a couple that came down from Vancouver for a critical proceeure, because they were on about a 7 month long waiting list, so opted to come here and pay for it. Granted, this was an extreme example. I think a mixture of the two , like what Romney did, Clinton is proposing, and similar to what Ironman stated is probably the way to go. Massachusetts made it mandatory for ALL persons to be medically covered, with the stste and in some cases the HMO's (this is the good part-forcing HMO's to start keeping costs down), to pay the difference. I don't know all the particulars, but it seems to be Govt intervention along with the private sector seems to be working. I don't know, the health care issue is a big one, and the answers aren't black and white. Funny how a lot of major issues are like that.