There is the underlying assumption that modernity translates into better health. A corollary of this logic is that we can live our lives pretty much as we want because we can always buy a repair. You know, the car won't start, the TV is broken, the telephone is dead ? no problem. Just call in an expert, spend some money and all is well.
People carry this over to their thinking about health. Our ticker falters, joints creak or an unwanted growth pops up ? no problem. Buy some modern medical care. If that doesn't work, it's a problem of money, better insurance, more hospital funding, more research for the "cure," more doctors, better equipment and more technology. Right?
Don't take my word for it. Listen to the perpetrators themselves. The following is taken right from the pages of the Journal of the American Medical Association (July 26, 2000): "Of 13 countries in a recent (health) comparison, the United States (the most modern and advanced in the world) ranks an average of 12th (second from the bottom)..."
For example, the U.S. ranks:
? last for low birth weight
? last for neonatal and infant mortality overall
? 11th for post neonatal mortality
? last for years of potential life lost
? 11th for female life expectancy at one year, and next to last for males
? 10th for age adjusted