The United States is in dire need of health care reform due to the incumbent “sick health care system”. Approximately one out of six Americans do not have health insurance, administration costs are excessive, healthcare spending is increasing and there is a high rate of medical errors. One of the recommendations for health care reform proposed by experts is that of providing universal health care coverage. Since the United Sates government spends more than half of revenue on health care, it is presumed that it is capable of paying for universal health care.
Under this reform, the coverage should also be available to visitors or immigrants. Immigrants should have the mandate to get health care coverage just like other American citizens since they also pay taxes. Hence, through such a reform, health insurance would be available to all Americans. The proposals for universal insurance coverage however differ in the required extensive degree from the current to the novel system. The other differences arise from the ways that would be employed for raising money to fund the universal coverage system (Anonymous, 2007).One of the proposed methods of funding is through subsidies and personal mandate.
Mandating that every American have health insurance meeting a threshold standard is a proposal that would lead to the least degree of change in the current system. Moreover, the government would have to provide tax credits or income related subsidies to the people who lack the potentiality to buy insurance due to financial constraints. The mandate would mostly apply to insurance based on employer as well as means-tested insurance and the scrapping off of Medicare. It would be a requirement for all Americans to but a total of three coverage levels with subsidies relating to income (Greenspun, 2009).
The other suggestion is elimination of tax deductions for health care expenses. Americans spend more money on health care because of many tax deductions. associated with health care services. The United States government upholds substantial amount of health care deductions. Perhaps this is the reason behind the country’s the most inflated health care costs globally. Implementation of this reform would ensure reduction of significant health care expenses in a typical American citizen (Fuchs and Emanuel, 2005).The third recommendation from interest groups is that of increasing the supply of doctors by increasing their numbers.
According to news from the Wall Street Journal, the United States never had a new medical school for a period of thirty years. The country has 131 medical schools currently, which are inadequate for the continual population increase. United States has the potentiality to fund novel medical schools in order to increase the supply of doctors. A standard curriculum that includes standard staffing plan and online textbooks should be provided by the government to enhance medical studies.
Moreover, it should be made much easier for foreign doctors to immigration practice in the United States. By doing this, the supply of doctors will increase, and American citizens will have access to adequate health care services (Fuchs, 2005).The three proposed recommendations would lead to prosperity of the health care industry in the United States. Universal insurance coverage will ensure that the health care industry has an increased number of paying customers. Moreover, the government basic rate would substantially reduce from what is currently obtained from Medicaid and Medicare (Greenspun, 2009).
President Obama’s new heath care reform fits into the recommendation of having universal coverage. According to the Reconciliation Act of 2010, significant transformations of the health care system were effected, making insurance coverage available to virtually al Americans. The coverage is available to approximately 95% of the legal American population.The other fact showing how the new reform fits into the suggested recommendation is that the bill provides funds for increasing the number of nurses and doctors as well as the number of hospitals (Bunce and Mathews, 2007).
The new reform however, does not fit into the recommendation of eliminating tax deductions for health care expenses. The reform increases the amount of tax paid by the wealthy citizens. The taxes are meant to cover for the additional health benefits and universal insurance cover. There are approximately one million people who earn more than $200,000 and about four million couples who earn more than 250,000. The two groups of citizens would pay a pay a total percentage of 3.8 on the total dividends, royalties and rent.
The reform also suggests the rise of medical expenses in the year 2013 to ten percent of the total income prior to eliminating tax deductions for individuals aged below 65 years. Critics have argues that the new reform does not provide concrete solutions to high costs and other problems associated with the health care system (Website health reform, 2009).
Anonymous (2007). Universal care: The United States system of health care delivery is inadequate, broken and needs to be replaced. Knight Ridder Tribune Business News
Bunce, V. C., & Mathews, M. (2007). The 2008 presidential candidates on health care reform.
Fuchs, V. R., & Emanuel, E. J. (2005). Health Care reform: why? What? When? Health Affairs 24(6), 1399.
Greenspun, P. (2009). Health Care Reform for the United States. Retrieved from http://philip.greenspun.com/politics/health-care-reform on March 28, 2011
Wells Fargo Small Business Roundup (2008). Reforming Health Care Reform
Website health reform (2009). The President’s message on Health Reform.