urban institute nonprofit social and economic policy research

Event: Andy Burnham, M.P., U.K.'s Secretary of State for Health

Wednesday, November 4, 2009
9:00–10:00 a.m.

Listen to the event

Audio Recording

Britain’s National Health Service came under scrutiny in the United States this summer when it was drawn into the debate over proposed health system reforms. In fact, it was subjected to much closer scrutiny by the British government a decade or so ago. As a result of the investment and reform that followed, some British leaders say the NHS has been transformed into a world-class health care provider. They point to survey data indicating that 93 percent of people in England say they are satisfied with their health care. Primary care is second to none, the officials contend, with lengthy waits for treatment or appointments with specialists things of the past.
The NHS isn’t perfect, of course, but in a world where a virus can emerge in Mexico one week and hit London and Washington the next, the health systems in England and America can learn from each other’s strengths. After all, the two nations share many of the same challenges in securing their economies, coping with demographic changes, and developing new technologies.

In this special presentation, the United Kingdom’s secretary of state for health, the Rt. Hon. Andy Burnham, M.P., will argue that now is the time for England and America to share much-needed perspective and knowledge and to bust a medical myth or two.

A question-and-answer session will follow the speech. Professor Sir Liam Donaldson, England’s chief medical officer, and Lord Darzi of Denham, holder of the Paul Hamlyn Chair of Surgery at Imperial College London, will participate.

- Bios (pdf)
- How Does the Quality of U.S. Health Care Compare Internationally? (link)

At the Urban Institute
2100 M Street N.W., 5th Floor, Washington, D.C.
Breakfast will be provided at 8:30 a.m. The forum begins promptly at 9:00.

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