Healthcare systems are in operation for the purpose of maintaining thehealth of the community, providing health services to the sickpopulation and curbing the costs of expensive medical bills. Thispaper will discuss the three types of health care systems namelynational health insurance, national health system and socializedinsurance system.
TheNational Health Insurance program is a government-run insuranceprogram. Taxes are used to finance the health insurance via a singlepayer system, and only one party has the responsibility of payinghealth care providers for their medical services. The system does notrequire advertising, and does not operate for profit and for thisreason tends to be cheaper and simpler compared to other for-profitinsurance companies. Besides, the government has a considerablemarket power to negotiate for lower prices. Canada’s system forinstance, has negotiated such low prices and offers its citizensdrugs at cheaper prices (Armstrong, 2011).
NationalHealth Systems are publicly funded healthcare systems. They areprimarily funded by central taxation. These systems offercomprehensive range of health services to citizens of a country.Socialized insurance systems on the other hand are public insuranceprograms carried out or mandated by governments to provide economicassistance to the elderly, the disabled and the unemployed. Thesystem is usually funded by contributions from employers, employeesand government revenues.
Currently,the United States has a socialized Medicare system. The system offershealthcare cover to individuals aged above 65 years, people withdisabilities and those with permanent kidney failure. The programhelps with the costs of healthcare. However, it does not cover allmedical expenses.
Forthis reason, I would suggest that the U.S. adopts a National HealthInsurance System. Through this system, a single public agencyorganizes health financing while the delivery of healthcare remainsexclusively to private entities. Currently, the U.S. health caresystem is very expensive and inaccessible to all its citizens. Infact, in 2004, the U.S. spent $1.79 trillion on healthcare. Thisamount was twice what most nations like France who have comprehensivesystems spend on healthcare (McCanne, 2004). With this spending, theU.S. should be able to provide all its citizens with high qualitycomprehensive healthcare. However, U.S. falls short of this goal andover 51 million individuals are uninsured. Lack of insurance isassociated with extreme health outcomes and over 18,000 individualsdie each year due to lack of insurance (McCanne, 2004). For thisreason, the U.S. needs to adopt a National Health Insurance System.
Undera single-payer system, just like other industrialized nations likeFrance, all U.S. citizens would be covered for all medical servicesincluding doctor visits, hospital appointments, long-term nursingcare, mental care, reproductive health and prescription drugs.Besides, it will replace premiums and out-of-pocket paymentscurrently paid by most individuals and businesses.
Further,it will lead to an improved quality healthcare and reduce theaccelerating healthcare costs, poor service and increasing numbers ofuninsured individuals. It will facilitate access to health care, keeppeople healthy, and prevent avoidable complications of diseases.Consequently, this will end the need for private insurance. Ifimplemented, the system would save the country enormous costs due tothe elimination of hospital billing costs, administration costs, andinsurance covers (Armstrong, 2011).
However,it will be difficult to fund a National Health Insurance in the U.S.Currently, the nation spends more than its industrializedcounterparts on Medicare and Medicaid programs (McCanne, 2004), andyet over 51 million individuals lack access to quality healthcare.Implementing the National Health Insurance will force the nation todouble personal and income taxes in order to afford high qualityhealthcare for all. Considering the unstable economic situation andthe increasing unemployment rates, this will be difficult to fund andimplement.
Armstrong,E. (2011). Thehealth care dilemma a comparison of health care systems in threeEuropean countries and the US.Singapore: World Scientific.
McCanne,D., (2004). A National Health Insurance Program for the UnitedStates. PlosMed. 1(2). Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC529426/