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Health Care in America and other Countries - Essay Example

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The healthcare system in the USA has distinct features that identify it in its functioning, as well as their running. The first aspect is based on government funding of the public healthcare system. In the United States, roughly 15% of the gross domestic product in the entire country is spent on healthcare…
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Download file to see previous pages In relation to this, since a large percentage of American lack health insurance cover, the cost of the services rendered tends to be prohibitive for Americans to receive health services. For this reason, this paper seeks to highlight the US health care system in relation to other countries, as well as the reforms in the healthcare. The United Kingdom runs a publicly funded universal healthcare system by the name National Health Service (NHS) (Chang, n.d). The funds in the case of the UK emanate from the taxation proceeds that citizens and other workers pay. In this light, most of the health services in the country are provided by the NHS and local governments while the provision lies under the Health Department. In Japan, a social insurance system in place, this requires that all citizens acquire health insurance from their work places or subscribed through community-based plans. Those who cannot afford insurance premiums are catered for by the public through the government. In addition, since most of the health insurance is in the private sector, the government negotiates with physicians on the prices for medical procedures and thus maintains health care costs to a minimum. Similarly, Germany employs a social insurance health model but have a relatively high co-payment. Moreover, the government does not negotiate procedural prices, but assigns the task to fund managers. Just as with Japan and Germany, Switzerland adopts a social insurance model in their healthcare system, which has contributed to the universal coverage of its citizens. The insurance companies are prohibited from making profits in the provision of basic care, but can make money from supplemental insurance. In addition, the insurance providers negotiate with healthcare providers to set prices on medical services while the government regulates the cost of drugs. The national health insurance is the model of choice for Taiwan adopted following adequate research on healthcare systems. All citizens must be insured with working people paying split premiums with their employers while the government provides subsidized rates for the poor and veterans, which presents a system is similar to the US Medicare program (Frontline, 2008). There are numerous problems within the current health care system in the United States among them is the provision of medical insurance. The US system is rated to have a poor cost-benefit ration where a significant number of people lack insurance while others are underinsured. This has served to push the costs of healthcare services to an all-time high, which has in turn stratified medical care where patients receive medical services depending on how much they are willing to pay. It is essential to establish universal coverage for all citizens regardless of their financial backgrounds. As such, the government should strive to develop viable policies that will transform the healthcare sector to be empathetic rather than profit oriented. Moreover, many are the times that the insurance companies dedicate their efforts to avoid paying claims. This reduces transparency within the healthcare system where insurance providers maximize their profits at the expense of the patients (Jonas, 2012). A solution to the prevailing situation can be found in the establishment of healthy competition among insurance providers and limiting their profits. In addition, limiting bureaucracy in the system would serve to divert attention to patients and not ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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