Understanding The U.S Healthcare System
For many, the U.S healthcare system is a confusing labyrinth of policies, politics, insurance programs and expensive health services. It isn’t hard to deny that the American healthcare program is slightly less rewarding and accommodating of its citizens than that of other countries such as the United Kingdom’s NHS or even Canadian provincial health programs such as OHIP. The discussion around the structure of healthcare in the United States has been around for many years and shows no sign of stopping. However, to be a part of this system you must first understand it.
The way that the healthcare system in America works is that everyone pays out of their own pocket for health services. Hospitals and medical clinics can be either privately or publically owned. This makes the health care system a “public-private” mix. While the government does run funded health plans, Medicare and Medicaid, these plans are geared towards protecting the elderly, disabled and the poor. Many individuals rely on getting health care coverage through their corporate benefits scheme in order to cover themselves financially if they require medical treatment. Additionally, the cost of health services in America tend to be considerably higher than European counterparts. This could be due to the fact that going to medical specialists is more common than seeing a general practitioner or that many emergency rooms carry out multiple tests which may often unnecessary. When all of these are combined, getting ill could prove to be a high financial risk for those that do not have health care insurance.
The Affordable Care Act: Explained
Due to the structure of the health system and the cost of health insurance, for many years the uninsured fell through the cracks and avoided health care services completely. In 2010, the Affordable Care Act was brought into law under the Obama presidency to remedy this. This act aimed to increase the amount of U.S citizens that had health coverage across the whole nation. The major provisions of this law ensured that:
- Insurers could not refuse coverage based on pre-existing conditions
- Minimum standards were created for health insurance policies
- Individuals without employer benefits schemes were required to purchase insurance
- Health Exchanges were set up to provide resources to those looking for affordable health plans and subsidies
Within the first initial years of this act being implemented, the number of those that had health coverage increased dramatically. Although not a perfect solution, it did bring about a slight improvement in the American healthcare system.
American Healthcare: Entering The Age Of Trumpcare
As of today, the future of healthcare in the United States is changing once again. It is now no longer a requirement for individuals to have a health insurance plan in place and with the unsurety of whether ‘Trumpcare’, also known as the American Health Care Act, will become law we could see another potential shift in the numbers of uninsured citizens. This is particularly relevant for those individuals who are freelancers or gig workers. Without a corporate benefits scheme to rely on and the fluctuating nature of their workforce, many individuals may fall through the cracks once again.
What You Can Do To Stay Insured
Having the correct health care coverage in place is vital especially when faced with expensive health services. It is important that you commit to staying insured by finding the right health care plan for you. Contrary to popular belief, not all health coverage plans are too expensive or costly. There are insurance providers on the market that are committed to providing affordable health insurance plans at a lower monthly premium that will fit both your needs and budget.
JAUNTIN’: The Importance Of Healthcare
As we have mentioned before, the benefits of having healthcare in place are hard to ignore. Although the landscape of the U.S healthcare system at the moment may be uncertain, the one thing that is certain is in order to protect yourself both from a health and financial perspective, health coverage is essential. JAUNTIN’ understands the unpredictability of the future and is committed to keeping the American population healthy and covered.
Photo credit to Today Testing.