It turns out to be the case that several old communist countries - I'm not talking Russia, but the poor members of the old Warsaw Pact - have better health care. At least in terms of cancer.
Britain came in second bottom of its bowel cancer survival league table, with only patients in the Czech Republic less likely to be alive five years after diagnosis. The survival rate in Britain was 51.6 per cent, compared with an OECD average of 57.4 per cent and 65.5 per cent in the US.Well, the problems aren't limited to cancer.
Britain also languishes near the bottom of the breast cancer league table, with a survival rate of 78.5 per cent. The OECD-wide average is 81.2 per cent.
Heart attack victims in Britain are also more likely to die after entering hospital than in most other developed nations.
And it isn't about spending. Countries with better results spend half what the UK spends.
The bureaucrats spin? Things are getting better. Great. Just don't get sick for another 10 years or so, and you should be good.