Universal Healthcare

Published: 2021-06-29 07:10:39
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Category: Social Issues

Type of paper: Essay

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Universal healthcare refers to national healthcare programs which provide all citizens with access to healthcare. Various countries have a single-payer system based on the government paying for the healthcare services. Universal or national healthcare systems are of three types: "national health insurance, national health system, and socialized health insurance" (Niles 299). The United States healthcare system is government funded and is employer-employee based. Citizens older than 65 years of age are provided 100% healthcare coverage with the Medicare program, while people younger than 65 years of age are provided with 82% coverage through "employer-based insurance, Medicaid, Indian Health Services, Veterans Administration (TRICARE) and the federal government employee program" (Niles 300).
Thesis Statement: The purpose of this paper is to investigate the concept of universal healthcare in relation to its global implementation, and examine the significance and implications of the Healthcare Bill in the United States.
Universal Healthcare in Selected Countries
National health insurance in Canada is implemented through delivery of care by private providers, but funding is by the government through general taxes. National health systems such as in Great Britain are based on provision of both healthcare and infrastructure for healthcare delivery by the government with the help of taxes. In socialized health insurance systems as in Japan and Germany, while private providers deliver healthcare, the government ensures that both employers and employees contribute financially to sickness funds at not-for-profit insurance companies who pay the healthcare providers (Niles 299). Switzerland's unique healthcare system requires all residents to purchase health insurance; hence it may be considered to have universal healthcare coverage. However, individuals bear the entire cost of insurance plans, since Swiss employers do not provide or contribute to health insurance.
France's healthcare system which is considered to be an almost ideal one, is similar in some respects to that of Germany and Japan. The country's expense on healthcare is the third most expensive in the world, at 11.1% of its gross domestic product. France has several health insurance funds regulated by the government, and overall provides universal healthcare coverage to nearly 99% of its citizens. Payroll taxes form the greatest sources of funding, while income taxes, general social contribution taxes on income, various revenues, and supplemental policies from private-for-profit health insurers generally paid for by employers. France's national healthcare system pays 100% costs for 30 chronic health conditions including cancer and diabetes. Additionally, citizens who are very ill can avail of increased healthcare coverage; this is unlike the United States system "where individuals may go financially bankrupt because of their cost sharing during a chronic disease" (Niles 301). Despite France's budget issues caused by its healthcare system's m billion-dollar deficit and other problems, comparatively, the French have the highest satisfaction level about their healthcare system.

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