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Universal Health Care in the USA

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It is generally known that the United States of America has been the only industrialized country where the Universal Health Care Act has not been adopted. It is relevant to the American political authorities that the end of the American health care system contains more favorable conditions as compared to any of world countries. It is true that some changes of general knee replacements are seen in the USA. Undoubtedly, if a person suffers from some difficult diseases, that person will definitely get the most advanced health care. However, there still exists a big number of people for whom access to medical care is unreachable and effects of this health care situation are pretty much the same as in poorer and less developed world countries. If to talk about the Universal Health Care Act, it is generally known that it is paid for or subsidized by governmental authorities. Starting from World War II, most developed countries of the world have adopted different types of universal health care for their citizens except the USA (being one of the most developed countries). Doubtless, supporters of health care act claim that this act will secure the most insecure American population and lead to economic development of the country. However, those who hold opposite opinions think that the Universal Health Care Act will lead the USA to debt and economic crisis. Thus, it is highly recommended to evaluate the history of universal health care system in the USA, paying attention to pros and cons.

Historically, it is known that since the 1800s till nowadays delivery of medical care in the USA has been a topic of heated debate. From the 1880s to 1912, political administration demonstrated silence in terms of the health care delivery system. However, during the Progressive Era, politicians started reforming social conditions for the working class in the USA. 1915 was a remarkable year for the health care system since at this time the American Association of Labor Legislation made a draft model of a health insurance program. However, this bill was announced as a compulsory health insurance plan that would not develop a universal health care system in the USA and would weaken the role of unions in determining social benefits for the working class. As a result, such opposition led to major transformation since health care costs started to increase rapidly (Cicconi and Srug 25). Consequently, the health care system took market-justice peculiarities and became a profitable business. During the governance of President Franklin D. Roosevelt, there were some attempts to adopt provisions for health care insurance; however, they were unsuccessful. At the times of the Cold War, the healthcare system became a topic of a very heated debate due to the fact that the government was against social medicine that would make doctors feel like slaves. Significant changes were made after signing of the Great Society Legislation Act by President Johnson that further positively influenced adoption of Medicaid and healthcare security. It is known that over the decades the struggle for universal healthcare coverage was unsuccessful because of ideological differences, cultural customs and values, opposition of political leaders, the entrepreneurial framework of American medicine, and development of different private social companies, such as Blue Cross. Undoubtedly, health care has become a commercial giant of the American society and has brought a lot of profit. On the contrary, its market-justice-based character has negatively influenced quality of health care. Due to rising costs of health care, many people have been simply denied the medical care they need. Nowadays, adoption of the universal health care act remains questionable in the USA. In this case, it is highly recommended to investigate pros and cons of this still unsolved issue (Deutsch 2).

Supporters of the universal health care act claim that it will bring people medical services that they cannot afford. What is more, universal health care will provide all people with basic medical services that will not discriminate anyone despite race, social status, and ethnicity. Besides, it will help unemployed people to get qualitative medical care. As a result, everybody who cannot afford to buy medical insurance will have a unique possibility to get basic medical care. If the government adopts the universal health care act, American citizens will not be afraid to purchase free medicine to satisfy their basic health care needs. Doubtless, it will reduce the number of infections in the society and other diseases that people usually ignore due to inability to buy drugs (Swendiman).

Thus, it will be much easier to have everyone under one system that will help medical workers to focus more on efficiency of medical care rather than insurance and social package of a patient. What is more, universal health care system will be the only way how to achieve medical distribution efficiency in the USA. Statistically, it is known that the USA is the only country that spends the biggest sum of money on health care in per capita comparing to other world developed countries. However, there are approximately 45 million citizens who still do not have health care coverage (Rice 491). This has led to the rise of health care costs, increase of death rate, and negative health indicators. If the USA adopts the universal health care act, it will reduce wasteful expenditure on primary care, reduce highly costly bureaucracy, and provide all citizens with medical care. It is worth mentioning that the universal health care bill will make American health care system not based on business, but based on primary care and need for qualitative primary services (Vladeck 17).

Additionally, it is necessary to mention other pros of efficiency of universal health care such as:
1. Reduction of uninsured US citizens, including illegal immigrants,
2. Elimination of inefficient paper work and other insurance documentation,
3. Development of a centralized national database that will make the work of medical employees easier and more qualitative,
4. Practice of prevention medicine and diagnosis of health problems on light stages (Daemmrich).

The idea of institutionalizing the universal health care policy has been in the works since the early 1900. The fight for introducing it in the US has stood at the basis of many presidential candidates through the years. Nowadays, President Obama signed in the spring of 2010 the Affordable Care Act, which came into effect in 2014. This act represented the beginning of the universal health care infusion in the American system, thus making the United States the last industrialized nation to accept this type of healthcare for its people. This huge change in the healthcare system of the United States has created a vast amount of controversy and debates among political parties and, without any doubt, among the population of the country. Criticism around the Affordable Care Act has taken the extreme proportions. However, there are proponents of the universal health care system who argue that the universal health care is a great idea. Besides, there are two options of the universal health care that are being proposed. The first option is called permissive, which most likely will lead to abuse of the system and a potential increase in taxes in order to fund the health care system. The second option is a restrictive type of the universal health care that may result in the increase in the lack of medical choices for individuals. Furthermore, it is believed that health care is one of the basic rights of every citizen and everyone should have to make their own choice as with any other rights that are available. Pro-universal health care enthusiasts claim that the government must give medical compensations to every individual and also accommodate required medical facilities in order to meet needs of the new system. The only great difference between the old health care system and the proposed system is that the entity paying the expenses will change.

The health care system proposed by the Obama’s administration has been encountering both positive and negative support along the way. There are many arguments against the universal health care policy that should be looked at and analyzed. The first argument against the universal health care system is that, as history shows, government-controlled entities are difficult to control in an organized manner. The concern behind this issue is that it is quite difficult to control such a big system while having it operate in a smooth manner. As an example, the Department of Motor Vehicle is a government-run entity that is usually quite hectic since there are always lines there. If something that keeps track of licenses and vehicles creates an enormous amount of hassle and confusion than makes people think of what might happen to a system that deals with lives of people. The second argument against the universal health care reform consists in the fact that free health care is not free at all. Even though the government pays expenses for the health care, other people are paying for it indirectly. The government increases taxes individuals must pay yearly in order to pay for the reform. Therefore, not having to pay the insurance premiums does not save any money since one has to pay higher taxes now (Deutsch 15).

Control of the health care system by the government means less choice and flexibility for patients. Initially, it may seem that individuals will have more options when choosing a doctor to visit. However, there will be controls placed during the process of picking a doctor or performing a surgery. Without such controls, costs of health care would skyrocket in no time. All these type of controlling actions will increase the number of patients receiving unsatisfactory medical care, thus setting up the stage for more political battles among the governing bodies. At the same rate, the health care industry will be implanted with all types of corruption and create groups of people who will receive special care because of their status in the society. The government-controlled health care system could considerably decrease the quality of the service provided by doctors because their flexibility and liberty of decision-making will be limited by the government interference. There might be certain rules and restrictions set in place by the government authorities that would prevent doctors from practicing medicine to the best of their abilities. Looking from a business prospective, many doctors will lose their practice and, thus, a lot of people will lose their jobs as well in the health care industry. The health care insurance industry will disappear, leading to more individuals becoming unemployed. Arguments against introduction of the universal health care system represent just a few of the plausible cons and there could be a lot more examples brought to attention, showing how destructive it may become down the road (Daemmrich).

All in all, the US universal health care act has been the subject of debate. The American society built on the ideas of capitalism, determinism, and individualism has been struggling for the universal medical care that will provide each resident in the USA with a possibility to get basic medical treatment despite social status, race, and other social conditions. A rational for the adoption of universal health care act can be explained by the fact that the government will have a possibility to establish a massive public campaign, ensuring basic medical care for all individuals. It is clear that the universal health care act will eliminate economic and social barriers in the American society. Undoubtedly, it will lead to provision of comprehensive coverage for all residents. It is also true that adoption of such new law is not a simple procedure since Americans do not believe political authorities anymore and are strongly against a social sentiment that for a long time has prevented the government from application of universal health care.

Moreover, Americans should understand that nationalization of a health plan is the only possibility to develop the health care system without a corporate take-over. A national public plan will ensure that each American citizen has a guarantee to get appropriate, rapid, and qualified medical treatment on time. Additionally, the universal health care act will reduce the big number of insecure individuals (almost 45 million) who still do not have medical insurance. Unfortunately, it is not new that poor people who have more illnesses compared with higher social classes have no ability to have medical care. Thus, poor people cannot afford to buy medical insurance that will lead to the rise of death rate and spread of infections. The universal health care act will protect unsecured people and reduce the number of communicable diseases. What is more, this act will provide those who are on the border of homelessness with basic medical treatment and care. It is needless to say that this act will eliminate doctor’s paperwork and, at the same time, it will increase the time span for effective diagnosis of a patient. As a result, patients will not have price tags that classify the quality of medical care by the ability to pay. Undoubtedly, adoption of medical care will not be an easy procedure for those who underestimate the role of medical care as a social privilege. These changes will transform general ideological thinking of the American nation and its culture. These shifts may be adopted not so soon or they may be not adopted at all. In this case, it is highly recommended to ensure that those who need medical care and cannot afford it will definitely get it.

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