Universal healthcare for America has been up for debate on why or why not we should have access to it. Although universal healthcare for America sounds like it’d help, it wouldn’t. It would force healthy people to pay for others' medical bills, people then would become not as careful with their health, most universal health care systems have a longer wait time for elective procedures, the government would end up cutting costs on other systems, and it will harm both patients and doctors.
Universal health care would make healthy people end up paying for sick people’s medical bills. 85% of healthcare costs is diabetes and heart diseases, which in most cases people can prevent those problems. The population is sickest. 5%, gets 50% of total health care costs and the healthiest, 50%, only gets 3% of the nation’s costs. I chose to smoke knowing that I may end up with cancer and or many other various health problems. Knowing that I chose to do this, I wouldn’t want others to pay for my medical bills if I do end up needing certain medical treatment. With universal healthcare, you will end up having to pay for that bill. Would you want to pay for someone else’s bill knowing that they (most likely) chose to do what ended up making them sick? I wouldn’t.
If we did have free health care, people would be less likely to care about their own health knowing that they don’t have to pay for it themselves. Without having to pay for whatever reason they may be in the E.R., people will overuse the free doctors’ visits and emergency room visits. Without universal health care people are cautious about what they do because they know they’ll end up paying for it in the long run but with the universal health care they wouldn’t care. Most people who barely get hurt or know it’s not life or death, won’t go to the E.R. or the doctor's office because why pay for something that isn't a danger to their health? With free health care, they’d go to the E.R. over a stubbed finger and the rest of us would have to pay for the bills of the doctor saying “Your finger is okay, the bone isn’t broken, just stubbed. It may be sore for a while but just keep some ice on it to keep the swelling down.”. Who would want to pay for the unnecessary x-ray bills, etc. for a stubbed finger?
With a universal health care system, most procedure waits are long. The government would be focusing on providing the most basic and emergent health care. All the people who would need a kidney, heart or lung transplant would be first before someone’s nose job or tummy tuck. With universal health care, your elective procedure would take a lot longer than it would without. According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), almost 18 million people got cosmetic procedures done in the United States. Normally, a person could go consult with a plastic surgeon on what they want done and be in the O.R. within a month but with universal health care, that wait could be a lot longer than normal. Although the universal health care system may not pay for it, if the procedure showed complications that may endanger their life, we’d end up having to pay for that surgery to correct it. Would you want to pay for someone’s plastic surgery gone wrong?
A universal health care system would cause the government to cut costs on many other things that they help provide for. For example, Canada has free health care. They spend 40% of their budget on health care. That reduces the funding for other things like education, buildings, roads, and other organizational structures and facilities. If America were to adopt this plan, that would cut down the costs for everything else and then end up with a low success rate. If we don’t have the funding for the education system and other things, how are we going to provide good education for our children and adults in order for them to become successful? Already, about 25% of high school freshmen fail to graduate from high school on time. To pay for universal health care, the government would cut costs and limit certain things. They may not be able to cover certain drugs for people in rare cases. They may end up preferring palliative care over expensive end-of-life care. The U.S. medical system is very good at saving lives but at a cost. The care for patients for their last 6 years of life makes up one-fourth of the Medicare budget. In the last month of someone’s life the rest of the money goes to other things. Half of it goes to the emergency room, one-third goes to the intensive care unit and one-fifth of it goes to surgery.
Universal health care, it would cause harm to the patient and doctors. The government would gather power over the financing and the delivery of medical services. They would also determine the benefits and medical procedures that we would get and the prices the providers paid for them. The government control would lower payment to the doctors and other staff, reduce the quality of care by limiting the ability of physicians to invest in advanced medical equipment, would limit access to care in the near term, as current doctors and other staff would retire early or quit, they would also limit access to care in the long term as they pay would go down so less smart and talented people wouldn’t choose to go into the field, and they would reduce the rate of medical progress because less and less people would go and want to receive medical training. Who would want to go to school for 8 years just to receive low pay and be in a lot of debt? Government payers, such as Medicare, reduce the doctor's payment levels. Since Medicare will reduce the payment rates, doctors may drop the patients with Medicare and pick up patients with private insured insurance. This would result in Medicare patients having less access to care. So, therefore, that’s putting pressure on the government’s money, so then the government will increase the payments for Medicare to try and get their money back. If this is already happening with one government-paid plan, imagine what universal healthcare would cause.
Many people will argue that universal health care is the way to go. The sound of it sounds wonderful but the results on everything else isn’t. They may argue that it will lower the costs of healthcare, it would eliminate administrate costs, and it will force hospitals and doctors to provide the same standard care at a low cost. If we get universal health care the government would need more money to fund it. Therefore, the government will raise taxes on everything else. If someone can’t afford health care already, how are they going to afford food, water or anything else they need? They couldn’t. They’d go hungry and may end up homeless due to the tax rising. The government would also end up having to take out money for other services that are needed and in a result of that, we’ll lose funding for those too. Universal health care would then force doctors and hospitals to work as hard for a lower cost. If that happened, most doctors wouldn’t spend so much time on one case because they are being paid less and would have too many cases to take care of at once. In a result of that, they’d just throw you in there and get you out because now no one has to pay for their medical bills. Less pay equals less care and more people would want to change professions because of so. Though the thought of having free health care sounds good, the results are not.
Though a lot of Americans support the idea of universal health care, it’s not the way to go. For universal healthcare to work everyone, even healthy people will have to pay additional taxes on everything else and other medical bills. The government would cut costs and lose funding for other important things, mostly education. Universal health care would be awesome if it could work, but overall, universal health care is not the way to go for America.
- Amadeo, Kimberly. “Why America Is the Only Rich Country Without Universal Healthcare.” The Balance, The Balance, 30 Oct. 2019, https://www.thebalance.com/universal-health-care-4156211
- Book, Robert A. “Single Payer: Why Government-Run Health Care Will Harm Both Patients and Doctors.”, The Heritage Foundation, https://www.heritage.org/health-care-reform/report/single-payer-why-government-run-health-care-will-harm-both-patients-and
- Challenges Facing the United States of America in Implementing Universal Coverage https://www.scielosp.org/scielo.php?pid=S0042-96862014001200894&script=sci_abstract&tlng=ar