A recent study of the US healthcare system by The London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine estimates that "there would be about 101,000 fewer U.S. deaths per year" if our healthcare system performed as well as those of France, Japan, or Australia.
I have grown used to seeing healthcare metrics place us well-behind other western nations (except in terms of cost), but that doesn't make it enjoyable to finish 19th out of 19 nations.
Here is a link to the study: Dead Last
The swine flu outbreak illustrates clearly the importance of public health, as does the spread of anti-biotic-resistant diseases. What could be a better breeding ground for infectious disease than a large pool of uninsured people upon which to spread? Does anyone think that wealth can lobby against disease itself?