Despite the powerful effects of social and behavioral factors on health, development, and longevity, U.S. health policy has largely ignored them. The United States spends far more money per capita on medical services than do other nations, while spending less on social services. Residents of nations that have higher ratios of spending on social services to spending on health care services have better health and live longer. The relative under investment in social services helps to explain why U.S. health indicators lag behind those of many countries. The best available evidence suggests that a health policy framework addressing social and behavioral determinants of health would achieve better population health, less inequality, and lower costs than our current policies.