TWO SIDES: Healthcare for all?

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While healthcare models in Europe are often looked at as an ideal model to Americans, the realities are harder to put into place. The U.S. needs healthcare that finds balance between frugality and accessibility.

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Regardless of what many Americans may believe, conservatives also believe that their healthcare is important. Everyone can agree that the American healthcare system is broken and something must be done. What opposing parties just cannot really agree on is what is broken and how to fix it. 

Conservatives believe that the healthcare system can be fixed by encouraging competition between pharmaceutical companies and health insurance, and also by changing our system of damages payments, which makes their distribution almost a “lottery.” Conservatives are strong believers that individuals are in charge of improving their own lives as much as possible.

The Affordable Care Act took away all power from consumers. It ended up raising costs in the long run and harmed America’s economy. Prices for healthcare should instead be transparent so that small businesses are able to offer healthcare at a low cost, instead of the government pounding us with high costs. 

Americans should also have the right to have a say if they want healthcare, and if so, what kind. Many people are better off having healthcare plans through their jobs or different organizations at low or no cost. However, if that is not allowed, many Americans are stuck with high-cost plans that they may not even be taking advantage of. 

A higher cost of healthcare amounts to pay cuts for working families around the United States. Americans should view healthcare as a patient-first type of deal. Conservatives empower citizens to choose the kind of affordable insurance that is best for themselves.

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Our broken system has created a crisis that has resulted in out-of-control cost which in turn unfortunately also resulted in less access to health services and Americans without insurance. This has occurred because people are losing their current plans. President Obama promised Americans that they could keep their current health insurance plan if they wanted. Businesses decided to pay tax penalties to not provide health insurance, because it was cheaper than providing their employees with the ACA insurance.

This is not what Americans want or need, but many people are blinded because they believe that a government that provides healthcare for everyone is a good government. Americans need to recognize that we have a fragile economy, and until we have a better plan or situation, it is not in our best interest to pursue "healthcare for all" acts, because they eventually result in many Americans losing their plans or not being able to afford them. Choice and competition are two aspects that will regulate healthcare costs and significantly enhance outcomes. 

Being fair is all Americans ask for. Every reasonable person would agree that saving Medicare is crucial because those citizens that have it have worked extremely hard all of their working years; it is truly a benefit they have earned.  

If Americans allow government to control healthcare, potentially less people will enter the medical profession because of the risk of inadequate compensation. If there is a shortage of doctors along with a high demand for them, there will be a longer wait period for healthcare sessions. This can potentially result in Americans not getting the help they need on time. The rest can be left to imagination because it is not pretty; it is a scary position to be in as an American.

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The Western world has always been held in high regard, not only for its high standard of living, but also for the innovative minds which continue to raise this standard. One of the richest countries in the West, however, is falling behind. This country is our country, the United States of America. Once known as “the land of opportunities”, the United States is not even in the top ten for quality of life, according to U.S. News. Our neighbor to the north often fares much better in these global rankings: Canada is in the No. 1 position, in fact. The globe looks to Canada as a model these days, and there is one issue that Canada always seems to place far ahead of us in. No, I am not talking about not meddling in foreign wars or truly being an accepting society, though those are also very compelling reasons. I am talking about healthcare.

This is not the first time the idea of universal healthcare has been brought to the table in the United States. In 1915, a model bill was drafted proposing socialized healthcare. Sadly, this bill was shot down, and the idea of universal healthcare was kept out of conversations until the presidency of Franklin D. Roosevelt. Other presidents who had ideas for universal healthcare were Truman and Bill Clinton. As is quite obvious, there is a similarity between these men: they were all left-leaning presidents.

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The increasing number of far-left Democrats believe that healthcare is a human right, and are pushing to get every American the care they need (and in some cases, care they may not even need). Republicans and conservative/moderate Democrats seem to agree that providing universal healthcare would be both costly and inefficient. Republicans want to scrap the idea altogether in favor of free market insurance plans. Conservative/moderate Democrats support the Affordable Care Act. However, despite the efforts of the Affordable Care Act, 27.6 million Americans remain uncovered. 

It is quite obvious, the price tag for universal healthcare is a hefty one – Sanders’ "Medicare for All" plan was estimated to cost $32.6 trillion over the next ten years. The cost seems to be the main argument of the Republican and conservative Democrat. However, a study by the libertarian Mercatus Center can be read to claim that healthcare spending would decrease by $2 trillion. How is this possible? These figures seem to be direct contradictions. Add $32.6 trillion of government spending and save the American people $2 trillion? Yes, it is possible. 

This is because the payments made by the individual to private insurance companies, or even certain progressive states such as California, will be non-existent. Businesses will no longer pay for employee healthcare; families will no longer have to pay aggressive deductibles or premiums. Pharmaceutical companies will no longer be in charge of prices, because they will only have one buyer. A portion of our tax dollars will go into a collective healthcare system, leaving everyone in this country with the ability to use the system when needed. 

Tax dollars actually being beneficial has been a foreign concept for Americans for too long. While our tax dollars have been used for invasions of our privacy, greedy foreign wars and increasing government salaries, we have been silent, simply feeding the useless machine and being thankful for the opportunity. Tax dollars should work for the people, not the self-interest of the government. We have the right to dictate where our money goes. Remember, the government relies on us, not the other way around.


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