Universal health is one of the most controversial and discussed topics in the United States. Healthcare is something that affects everyone around the world. Universal healthcare is a healthcare system that provides healthcare to all citizens in a country.
Universal healthcare (UHC) is seen as something that is vital for the basic human life. Healthcare should be a necessity instead of a privilege. The definition of universal healthcare embodies three objectives; “Equity and access to health services, quality of health services should be good enough to improve the health of those receiving services; and people should be protected against financial risk, ensuring that the cost of using services does not put people at risk of financial harm. It should be the government’s responsibility to provide healthcare for all Americans because having the right to healthcare will improve health, reduce healthcare spending and it would stop medical bankruptcies. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, “33 million people in the united states, did not have health insurance in 2014” (healthcareprocon).
33 million, which is 10.4 percent of the United States population, are suffering without healthcare. Healthcare should not be taken as a privilege when it was promised to be the opposite when the country was first developing. Universal health care campaigning has been going on for nearly a century. The United States in particular was at the verge of success in achieving universal health many times. This failure in achieving universal health helped shape the American history and ideology.
During the late 19th and early 20th century, “the government took no actions to subsidize voluntary funds or make sick insurance compulsory” (pnhp). The federal government left the responsibility to the states and states left them to private programs. Although there were no public programs specifically for healthcare for all, there were funds that were provided for their members in case of sickness or death. Reformers were looking to improve social conditions for the working class. The United States lacked a powerful support from the socialist party for health insurance so the benefit programs and sickness funds were more fragmented than it was in Europe. That is why the first couple of propositions for health insurance failed when brought into political debate. President Theodore Roosevelt, who supported health insurance, believed that “no country could be as strong whose people were sick and poor” (pnhp).
Even though Roosevelt believed that health insurance was necessary, most of the initiative reform took place outside of the government. One of the obvious reasons healthcare should be universal is because healthcare is an internationally recognized human right. The United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights was signed by the United States and 47 other nations on December 10, 1948. “? ?Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and wellbeing of oneself and one’s family… (healthcare.
org). Everybody should be entitled to healthcare services without worrying about any financial hardships. The United States and Mexico are the only countries that do not have universal health. It’s shocking because the United States is one of the world powers and is well advanced compared to other countries, yet they do not have health care that could save thousands of lives. According to a 2011 commonwealth fund study “due to a lack of timely and effective healthcare, the United States ranked at the bottom of a list of 16 rich nations in terms of presentable mortality” (balancedpolitics). People live 2 to 3 times longer in countries where there is universal health.
Italy, Spain, France, Australia, Israel and Norway or one of the few countries that have lower mortality rates then the United States primarily due to the lack of Universal health.Those who are against universal health care dislike the proposition because they believe healthcare could lead the United States toward socialism. The government controls the distribution of healthcare services if it’s under a single payer system. “One of the traditional methods of imposing socialism on a person has been by way of medicine, and once socialized medicine is instituted, behind it will come other federal programs that will invade every area of freedom (healthcare). Many people are afraid that the United States will slowly shift into socialism if there is universal healthcare. Those who oppose universal health care believe that the government should not determine the cost and availability of healthcare; that it’s the job of the free market. Overuse of medical resources is another reason many are scared of universal healthcare. People living below the poverty line saw physicians 20 percent less often than those who were not in poverty.
According to the Brookings institution “by 1975, people living in poverty who were placed on Medicaid saw a physician 18 percent more often than people who were not on Medicaid” (healthaffairs). They are concerned of installing universal health would make individuals visit the doctors or emergency rooms even when it was not necessary. They fear that the splurge of unnecessary visits will cause medical resources to run out more quickly. There should be universal healthcare in the United States so everyone has an equal access to healthcare. It gives people who are not able to pay for healthcare an opportunity for services without being overwhelmed about the cost. The universal healthcare system allows health services for all citizens. It provides services to the unemployed or have other obstacles that hinder them from getting any medical services they need. Every member of society can be able to access healthcare no matter his social status.
A rich person gets the same service as a person who is less fortunate. Some may argue that the rich person worked harder to get the same service as those less fortunate. The logical answer would be that the less fortunate did not choose his place in life; therefore it would be unfair to classify those who are less fortunate as below you. Another reason universal health would be good is to improve public health. If the entire population distributes around the cost of healthcare, everyone would get the basic care they need without any expenses. This type of healthcare would also improve the over health of the population since everyone is getting treated without worrying about the cost after. More people would go to hospitals; therefore reducing the amount of curable illnesses suffered by the general population. One of the obvious reasons why the change to universal health would be a positive change is because there would be less paper work and it would reduce medical bankruptcies.
Under one health system, doctors and physicians can focus more on their patients rather than filling out insurance paperwork. In 2017, “62% of all united states bankruptcies were related to medical expenses even for those with health insurance” (formosapost). With universal healthcare, medical bankruptcies would no longer be a problem and it would lead to a more healthier and richer nation. Converting America’s health insurance would benefit the united states in many ways. Universal health care would provide a health care package that would benefit everyone in America.
Health care that provides for every member of society is an essential if we want America to flourish. Health care should not be viewed as a commodity and gift that is based on how much an individual makes for a living. Senator, Ted Kennedy states in his speech that ” it’s time to make universal health insurance a national priority, so that the basic right to healthcare can finally become a reality for every American” (healthcarereform). Many Americans believe everybody has a right for universal healthcare because healthcare should be viewed as something that is needed for the basic functions of life, rather than being viewed as something luxurious.