The United States' health-care system is "a ticking time bomb" that could seriously damage the nation financially unless major changes are made, President Barack Obama said Monday in a speech to the American Medical Association.
He compared America's situation to that of big U.S. automakers, the Associated Press reported.
"A big part of what led General Motors and Chrysler into trouble were the huge costs they racked up providing health care for their workers -- costs that made them less profitable and less competitive with automakers around the world," Obama said.
"If we do not fix our health-care system, America may go the way of GM -- paying more, getting less and going broke," he warned delegates at the AMA's annual meeting.
The president said the current health-care system leaves too many people uninsured and forces doctors into "excessive defensive medicine" due to worries about malpractice suits. This leads to a high number of unnecessary medical tests or procedures, the AP reported.
The speech was part of Obama's efforts to overhaul the U.S. health-care system. Broader insurance coverage and targeted spending cuts are among the proposals being pushed by the president.