WASHINGTON, June 21 (UPI) -- Dr. Donald Berwick's love of the British health system could mean an uphill battle for his confirmation to lead the U.S. Medicare program, experts say.
While hospital executives who have worked with Berwick describe him as a visionary, opponents point to his writings and speeches on the need to cap spending, ration healthcare and a love affair with the socialized British healthcare system, The New York Times reported Monday.
In his book, "Escape Fire: Designs for the Future of Health Care," Berwick attacked "the dangerous, toxic and expensive assumption that more is better."
Because huge amounts of money are misspent, the United States could cut healthcare costs without hurting patients.
"I have said before, and I'll stand behind it, that the waste level in American medicine approaches 50 percent," he said in an interview in the journal Health Affairs in 2005.
On the 60th anniversary of Britain's national health service in 2008, Berwick expressed his support of that system. "The NHS is not just a national treasure," he wrote, "it is a global treasure."