Why Does U.S. Health Care Cost So Much?

From the New York Times:

The graph below tells a compact story of United States health spending relative to that of other nations.

Shown on the horizontal axis is the gross domestic product per capita in 2006. The vertical axis represents 2006 health spending per capita. The data points in the graph represent two dozen developed countries that are members of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (O.E.C.D.).

The data are expressed in Purchasing Parity Dollars (PPP$). This metric is designed to adjust for cross-national differences in the purchasing power of national currencies relative to the real goods and services. One can think of PPP$s as dollars that buy roughly the same basket of real goods and services in different countries.