Why the U.S. never got universal health care


One big thing you should know about the U.S.
health care system: it’s barely a system at all. It’s a patchwork. A bunch of different systems crammed together. That’s why it’s so expensive and why it
can be such a pain to use. We’ve never really decided what we want
to prioritize, and that’s part of the reason we don’t have universal health care, like
so many other countries do. So why doesn’t the U.S. have universal health
care? There have been lots of calls for it, dating
back to Theodore Roosevelt, who proposed national health insurance in 1912. But a national system of government-run health
insurance never happened. Instead, employers started offering health
insurance in World War II as a benefit to attract workers, since everyone’s wages
were frozen. That’s how we got the employer-based health
insurance system we have today. Instead of creating one program to cover everyone
else, the U.S. decided to add onto it piece by piece: * Medicare for seniors. * Medicaid for low-income people. * CHIP for kids. * And each one of those programs is a patchwork
within itself. Then there’s the Affordable Care Act, another
complex marketplace for people who don’t have another source of health coverage. The catch is – that still leaves about 28
million people uninsured, including low-income adults and non-citizens. Many of those who haven’t signed up say
it’s because they can’t afford the coverage. By contrast: * Canada has had national health care since
1968. * Britain has had it since 1948. * Germany requires everyone to be insured
by a “sickness fund” — a system that started in 1883. * Switzerland has required everyone to buy
health insurance since 1996. The bottom line: Unlike other countries, the
U.S. has never reached a consensus on whether health care is a right, or whether universal
health care should be a goal. Unless that happens, the U.S. isn’t going
to have the kind of health care safety net that other countries have.

10 Replies to “Why the U.S. never got universal health care”

  1. If we went the traditional route of universal healthcare, we'd have to nationalize the hospitals and doctors. That means that most doctors and all specialists would receive dramatically lower pay. If we went with a hybrid system, whereby the GVT sets prices (al la Medicare) and doctors/hospitals would have to comply, it still wouldn't work. Some hospitals would fail because they don't have their expenses in order. Providers would also need to reduce their income dramatically or (more likely and what is happening now), play the system such that they do more tests/procedures, make sure they are a part of a hospital (so get a higher reimbursement), or something else. Of course the medical system does not operate under supply/demand/price rules (healthcare is not finite, but ever expanding into things like "pre" hypertension. You don't have it, but we'll treat you anyway). So anything that is proposed must be put through this filter. For example, cutting the number of days a person stays in the hospital may sound great, but if the cost for 1/2 those days is now more than the prior full term, something is wrong (so 3.5 days costs more than 7 days).

  2. A national healthcare system is simply not the same as universal healthcare – unless it becomes – one tax-based system and the 'right' of all citizens. Yes, I said it, …an entitlement. (The opposition to that is enormous!) The wife and I have been in healthcare and watched the process since Hilary Clinton took a shot at it, and where the money-power people spiked it fast to later propose a much different route. Obama was that weakened way, …resulting only in the creation of additional policies being paid for by taxpayers, but leaving the patchwork described here undisturbed. (The lie was in insurance companies feigning being bankrupted by it all.) Therefore, …universal healthcare has been 'buried' under a national healthcare program from the beginning. A partial effort in "single payer proposals" is a wuss attempt to bring universal healthcare back to the table – but most people are persuaded to believe it cannot be done without tax increases, that 'research' and universal healthcare can't live side-by-side. Etcetera. I love America – and – what it 'could' be again. ps: to RS & Assoc: untrue, and look beyond money for the 'good' docs my fellow Americans!

  3. As long as the US is still a member of the United Nations it should pursue the UN WHO 2030 Universal Health Coverage goal for all people… but do it a hell of a lot sooner than 2030

  4. I use the VA. And had Tricare, while in Military and as a spouse. VA in Texas was horrific. But you can milk the system there much easier when you exaggerate certain illnesses. More money, going through motions. OR, they refuse treatment to those who need it the most. Make it difficult enough, that you give up, go away, and die. Most treatment for illness or disease the Doctor Prescribes. But they are unconcerned, any after all they are Corresponding Course and Medical School bottom tier Grads. Getting big checks, for little work. Go to a VA parking lot, see all those Corvettes, BMWs, ECT. Or your local Wal-Mart. What kind of car do you see in those parking space. Decked out Vans, sports cars, ECT. While GRANDMA w a cane, Pregnant women, those in Cancer treatment, waddle into store. With a 99 Honda. That system there is corrupt. Such as, you may go in for Sleeplessness due to Depression and anxiety. But instead you can get listed for Sleep Apnea. Treating you for depression is more costly (blood test, counseling, drugs). And inconvenient for some (long waits for appt, forced use of substandard Dr., transportation problems, anxiety of dealing w VA). Which pays much much more.
    I know a guy who while deployed hung his flight vest above his bed. It fell, hit him in the head. He was seen for a bump. When he started to get into trouble stateside. He blamed it on a head injury and PTSD. So he was allowed to beat his wife, cuss out Command, skip work ECT. He was Medically Discharged. And recieved another 90 percent from the VA. For faking! Meanwhile, the Vietnam Vet begging for assistance only option is to threaten homicidal ideation to get a 3 day stay. But still be denied entrance into system. Or the Rapist, get treatment, and payment. While the Soldier who was assaulted, harassed, experienced Workplace bullying. Gets a Pap Smear, if they are lucky. They say, you can report sexual assault and receive assistance and care IF someone can vouch for the assault. Oh you mean like The Command, who covered up the assault? The Squad Leader who is only looking out for her career. The Platoon Sgt, who loves that Soldier because he's a Bird of a feather. Or, the co workers and subordinates who joined in on terrorizing you. Glad it's not them. Embarrassment, hopelessness or refusal/minimal treatment of the Victim is COST EFFECTIVE. Where the assaulter, gets more than living wage, benefits, treatment ECT. And sells The drugs he's prescribed to neighbors. Lives a Good Life, with lifetime Healthcare. A clean record, bc you are WILLFULLY BLIND, and believe Military Branches punish like Civilians. No, they don't have to register. The point is you wanna know why healthcare costs so much. Keep believing this tidbit is an exception to the rules. Oh, and there's Dental. The Soldier who did not pay attention while receiving instruction during weapon training, shatters teeth. Or simply has bad hygiene. Gets caps. Lifetime dental. But many who have served Honorably and age, walk around with tooth pain, tooth loss. You do realize Soldiers get their teeth pulled by other Soldiers. Often with complications. It's a month's long course. Have you ever been to a bad dental school?

  5. America is backwards and believe that healthcare is a privilege for fat wallet holders. Americans also do not like immigrants so get upset at the idea of paying in to their healthcare… I mean why else did Trump win presidency? He promised to keep the immigrants out and is building an actual wall to prove it.

    Why not say it how it is, it's all about selfish behaviours and immense greed that universal healthcare is not in place over there….

  6. let me just put it this way…. employer = direct purchase. its the same damn thing! because employers take that out of your paycheck!!

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