In the largest health care study ever undertaken, researchers from Harvard and Princeton have given high marks to Mexico's most comprehensive health care program, Seguro Popular, for providing care to millions of uninsured at low cost.

The study spearheaded by Harvard Professor of Government Gary King tracked 118,569 households over 10 months to determine the success of the targeted delivery of health care to families with similar health needs. Recipients of Seguro Popular were compared to patients who paid out-of-pocket for their medical expenses and results showed that patients who received health care from Seguro Popular paid significantly less than their uninsured counterparts.

This reduction in catastrophic health expenses--or those that exceed one-third of family income--for poor families is held as something of a holy grail by proponents of health coverage for the uninsured in the United States.

The fact that excellent health care, which Mexico has long been known for, can be delivered affordably in what many observers have dubbed narco state presents a compelling juxtapostion with the health care situtation in the US.


Professor King commented to Big Think: "that the US's poorer southern neighbor was able to insure about the same number of people as remain uninsured in the US would seem to suggest that something might be possible here as well."