American men are sicker, die earlier than men living abroad, study says

According to a new report from the Commonwealth Fund, a nonprofit that focuses on public health issues, American men are sicker and die earlier than men in other developed nations.

The study looked at men from the US, Switzerland, Norway, New Zealand, Germany, Australia, the UK, France, the Netherlands, Canada and Sweden and found that the rates of preventable death, chronic illness and mental health needs are among the highest American men.

According to the study, around 29% of American men reported suffering from multiple chronic diseases, closely followed by Australian men at 25%. Men living in France and Norway were lowest at 17%.

“Whether it’s stubbornness, a reluctance to appear weak or vulnerable, or some other reason, men are much less likely to see a doctor than women,” the study’s authors write.

Men in the US also die from preventable deaths, classified as deaths before age 75, at a higher rate than men from the 10 other countries listed in the report.

The study showed that income differences also have an impact on health. Men with lower incomes are more likely to engage in unhealthy habits like drinking and smoking, leading to chronic conditions like diabetes, obesity and heart disease.

Low-income earners are the least able to afford adequate care and are unable to see a doctor regularly, which contributes to worsening health problems, the study added. Men who are stressed because they are low earners were less likely to have had a regular doctor.

The US remains an outlier, being the only developed nation without universal health coverage, and has led to men avoiding getting the care they need because the cost is too high, researchers found.

“About 16 million U.S. men are without health insurance, and affordability is the most common reason people cite for not enrolling in a health insurance plan,” they wrote.

American men also disapprove of the US health care system, with only 37% giving it a high rating. It is even worse for men with below-average incomes: Only 32 percent support the health system.

There was a silver lining among men in the US. They have the lowest rate of prostate cancer-related deaths among the other countries surveyed, largely because the U.S. offers widespread cancer testing and advanced treatments, the study authors said.

ABC News reached out to the study’s authors for comment, but received no response.

Copyright © 2022 ABC, Inc. American men are sicker, die earlier than men living abroad, study says

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