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America ranks 27th in the world for education and health care

America ranks 27 in the world for education and health care (Photo: Pixabay)

SEATTLE (KOMO) – America takes 27th place in the world when it comes to education and health care – back in 1990, we ranked sixth.

Researchers from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation were trying to pinpoint the number of productive years a person in each country can be expected to work between the ages of 20 to 64, factoring in things like education and health care in the process.

The verdict: 23 years at peak productivity in the workplace – which researchers refer to as ‘human capital.’

“Our findings show the association – between investments in education and health and improved human capital and GDP – that policymakers ignore at their own peril,” said Dr. Christopher Murray, director of IHME. “As the world economy grows increasingly dependent on digital technology, from agriculture to manufacturing to the service industry, human capital grows increasingly important for stimulating local and national economies.”

Due in part to America’s minimal progress in education attainment, human capital has gone down. The calculation was based on over 2,000 surveys and censuses data on years of schooling, test scores on language, math and science, and health levels related to economic productivity.

The study measured human capital of 195 countries and territories from 1990 to 2016.

Ten most populous (in order) countries expected human capital ranked:

1.China ranks 44th

2.India ranks 158th

3.America ranks 27th

4.Indonesia ranks 131th

5.Brazil ranks 71th

6.Pakistan ranks 164th

7.Nigeria ranks 171th

8.Bangladesh ranks 161th

9.Russia ranks 49th

10. Mexico ranks 104th

Compared to the U.S., China had the opposite score – going from 69th in the world to 44th. Finland was among the top, with almost 29 years of productivity, followed by Iceland, Denmark, the Netherlands and Taiwan.

Niger was at the bottom, with less than 1.6 years of human capital.

“Under-investing in people may be driven by lack of policy attention to the levels of human capital,” Murray said. “No regular, comparable reporting across all countries on human capital currently exists. Such reporting over the next generation – as a way to measure investments in health and education – will enable leaders to be held accountable to their constituents.”

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