Health Policy Issue: Universal Health Insurance
Universal Health Insurance
Eligibility and Provider
The government will provide universal health care. This will be achieved through initiation of major reform programs for health mainly aimed at delivering a single-tier health service. The single-tier health service will be supported with Universal Health Insurance and all the people will access it based on their needs and not their ability to pay.
As implied in the basis of provision universal health insurance, all people will have equal access to healthcare based on their needs and uninfluenced by income. Additionally, all people will be insured for a standard compendium of curative healthcare service with no distinction made between public and private patients. This program will also include universal GP care and a universal hospital care that includes independent non-profit trusts and private hospice. The universal health insurance will, however, not include social health services but the later will be integrated around the users. The system will be a multi-payer insurer model with competing insurers (Kotlikoff, 2007).
Impacts This Proposal on Providers and Recipients
Better Cover for Patients. This plan seeks to create a federally administered single-payer healthcare program which will make it possible to provide comprehensive coverage for all the people. The plan will also will cover the healthcare continuum in entirety; patient to outpatient, primary care to specialty care and preventive to emergency care. The specialty care include: long-term and palliatable care, hearing and vision, oral, mental and substance abuse. Medical prescriptions, supplies, medical equipment, diagnostics and treatments will be part of this program too, as stated by Mayes (2005). The patients’ choice of healthcare providers will not be restricted by whether the provider is in-network or not and the care that the patients need will be provided with necessarily reading the fine print or meeting the out-of-pocket costs. All a patient will be required to do is to provide the doctor with his insurance card. No more deductibles, copays and no complaints of unresponsive insurance firms.
The patients will also be able to save much money that is currently being spent on health care services. When the healthcare systems are reformed, the cost of insurance and hence of healthcare will be reduced by a greater margin. The payment systems are supposedly going to be simplified so that the patients will get better care services with huge savings on health cost. Americans’ estimate that a similar plan can save them over $6 trillion in the next decade.
Getting the Cost of Healthcare under Control. Currently, we outspend all other countries in the world in healthcare and yet our health cost continuous to soar at rates that are well above the inflation rates. By creating a single health insurance system will help to curb overshoots in our spending as stated by Kotlikoff (2007). The high levels of administrative costs in the health sector are as a result of many insurance agencies which set different reimbursement rates for different providers and procedures. For example, two patients with the same health condition can receive different healthcare depending upon where they live, what their insurance covers and the type of insurance covers they have. The government will provide free health care to all citizens. This will be accomplished by launching major health reform programs aimed primarily at providing a single-tier health service. The single-tier health service will be backed up by Universal Health Insurance, and everyone will have access to it based on their needs rather than their ability to pay.
As implied by the provision for universal health insurance, all people will have equal access to healthcare based on their needs, regardless of income. Furthermore, everyone will be covered for a standard set of curative healthcare services, with no distinction made between public and private patients. This program will also include universal primary care and universal hospital care, as well as independent non-profit trusts and private hospice care. However, universal health insurance will not include social health services, which will be integrated around the users. The system will be based on a multi-payer insurance model with competing insurers (Kotlikoff, 2007).
What are the implications of this proposal for providers and recipients?
Patients will benefit from improved coverage. This plan aims to establish a federally administered single-payer healthcare system that will enable comprehensive coverage for all citizens. In addition, the plan will cover the entire healthcare continuum, from inpatient to outpatient, primary care to specialty care, and preventive to emergency care. Long-term and palliative care, hearing and vision, oral, mental, and substance abuse are all examples of specialty care. According to Mayes, this program will also include medical prescriptions, supplies, medical equipment, diagnostics, and treatments (2005). Patients’ choice of healthcare providers will not be limited by whether the provider is in-network or not, and the care that they require will be provided without them having to read the fine print or pay out-of-pocket costs. All a patient needs to do is show the doctor his or her insurance card. There will be no more deductibles, copays, or complaints about unresponsive insurance companies.
Also, a patient may end up pay different amounts of money for the same prescription filled in two different places (Mayes, 2005. This has forced the healthcare providers and patients to navigate through this bewilderment and as a consequence waste a lot of time and resources. When the integrated health system is finally adopted, the government will be able to effectively and successfully negotiate with drug companies for fair prices for the people as a whole. The federal governments’ ability to track the access to different providers will be made easy to avoid provider shortages and to make sure that the community members access the providers they need.
Universal healthcare insurance in many nations has been accomplished by a blended model of financing. In general, tax collection income is the essential wellspring of financing, however, in numerous nations it is supplemented by certain duties (which might be charged to the individual and/or a business) or with the choice of private installments (either immediate or through discretionary protection) for administrations past those insured by the general public system.
Bernie Sanders, one of the democrats’ ticket contenders, has already outlined how he would finance the universal healthcare insurance. In 2013, he proposed two types of taxes to fund the program. The taxes encompassed a payroll tax of 6.7% on employers and a progressive income tax. The payroll tax of 6.7% will be paid on all wages or self-employment income. Married taxpayers with a monthly earning less than $250000 would pay income tax starting at the rate of 2.2% and increases as the income increases according the standard practices for tax. Sanders plan requires that married couple with a monthly earning of $5 million will be charged a surcharge of 5.4%. The Hillary Clinton campaign team say that Bernie’s proposal will overburden the middle class with additional taxes while Sanders claim that the plan will save them money. However, financial analysts have determined the money raised from taxation is a far much less than the minimum required to sustain the program and it will force Bernie’s government (if he were to look for alternatives of supplementing these collections.
Programs and Organizations they Are Involved
Other programs that effect of universal healthcare insurance are the Medicare. Medicare is a medical insurance for people with 65 years and above. It covers the complication in the health of the aged. Renal disease set in at certain age. This can cause kidney disease. The second program that competes universal healthcare insurance is the Medicaid with covers low income people who lack or have an inadequate medical insurance. The federal government gives the guidelines and procedures that are used in rewarding the benefits of Medicaid. However, there are specific eligibility requirements for one to receive the Medicaid benefits and the scope of time for the same is determined by the specific states. Additionally there is also the Obamcare that has met resistance almost equaling the support. Regardless, of these insurance policies, the implementation of a universal healthcare insurance remains unaffected (Kotlikoff, 2007).
Since, universal health insurance is cheaper and all inclusive, I request that this congress grant it funding. As compared to Medicaid and Medicare which are restricted to people of low income and people above 65 years of old respectively, universal healthcare makes no preference to any person despite the age or economic status.
Kotlikoff, L. J. (2007). The healthcare fix: Universal insurance for all Americans. Cambridge, Mass: MIT Press.
Mayes, R. (2005). Universal coverage: The elusive quest for national health insurance. Ann Arbor: Univ. of Michigan Press.