01 Mar 2018

What Is Universal Health Care?

What Is Universal Health Care?

As Obamacare premiums continue to rise, more Americans are talking about something called universal health care (abbreviated as UHC). This concept has been implemented in more than 50 countries around the world. But what is this system and how does it differ from the American model? Today, we’re going to explore this topic and dive into the details.

What Is UHC Exactly?

According to the World Health Organization, UHC provides “promotive, preventive, curative and rehabilitative health services” to citizens and legal residents of a given country. This means they can go to the doctor’s office without having to pay a hefty bill at the end of their visit.

Here’s a list of countries that have UHC, according to Nasdaq:

  • Australia
  • Austria
  • Bahrain
  • Belgium
  • Brunei
  • Canada
  • Cyprus
  • Denmark
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Hong Kong
  • Iceland
  • Ireland
  • Israel
  • Italy
  • Japan
  • Kuwait
  • Luxembourg
  • Netherlands
  • New Zealand
  • Norway
  • Portugal
  • Singapore
  • Slovenia
  • South Korea
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • United Arab Emirates
  • United Kingdom

How can these countries afford universal health care? Well, several nations including Canada and France fund their programs by collecting money through income taxes based on a stratified system. This means high-income earners pay more compared to low-income individuals.

Obamacare Is Not The Same As Universal Health Care

When the Affordable Care Act was enacted in 2010, many Americans thought this was President Obama’s idea of implementing UHC. This couldn’t be further from the truth. As the name of the bill suggests, the objective of the ACA was to provide Americans access to affordable health insurance plans. It also put an end to discriminatory practices that insurance companies employed against those with pre-existing conditions. The ACA, however, does not provide universal health coverage to all Americans, which is why the US is not on the list above.

Will The US Ever Implement UHC?

It’s quite unlikely. Most Americans view universal health care as a product of Western European socialism. According to an article in The Conversation, Americans “have a strong belief in classical liberalism and the idea that the government should play a limited role in society.”

Last fall, Senator Bernie Sanders unveiled a plan that would introduce UHC under a single system to nearly 323 million Americans. The bill also had the backing of 15 Democrats, yet faced staunch opposition from fellow politicians and the media, proving the country isn’t ready to accept this concept.

Whether you’re for or against UHC, it’s crucial we continue to talk about the issue of affordable health coverage in this country. If you’re looking to purchase a plan or have any questions, feel free to contact one of our agents at 855-614-5057 or visit our website.

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