Free Essay

Healthcare System in Us

In: Social Issues

Submitted By sabeen
Words 1284
Pages 6
Running Head: Healthcare System

Healthcare System in US
[Name of the Writer]
[Name of the Institution]

Healthcare System in US

United States is the largest and most diverse society on the globe. It spends almost 2 trillion dollars every year on health care, which is one in every seven dollars in the economy. U.S is one of the very few nations where all its citizens do not have medical coverage. Although it spends heavily on per capita on health care, and it has the most advanced medical technology system in the world, still it is not the healthiest nation on earth. The system performs so poorly that it leaves 50 million without health coverage and millions more inadequately covered (Garson, 2010).

History of Medicare
In 1945, the United States president Harry Truman decided to bring to the attention of the Congress. The message was in an attempt to develop a universal plan that would be applicable to all United States citizens. The Congress contemplated the bill that would establish a healthcare plan. The debate for a comprehensive plan carried on for twenty years. The prolonged wait made president Truman give up on the idea. Even though the president had given up on the healthcare bill, Social Security system and a number of other participants continued the efforts. After two decades of struggle, in 1965, the Medicare and Medicaid plans became legislation after the Congress approved the bill. President Lyndon Johnson’s vision of a “Great Society” and Harry Truman’s initial efforts materialized. It would only be fitting for Harry Truman to be the first person to enlist in Medicare. This Act became applicable to the general public and has been serving since its introduction in 1965. There is currently a debate as to what changes does the Act need to address the changing needs (Shi & Singh, 2009).

Health care professionals involved
Medicare healthcare system in United States has the best healthcare professionals in the world. It has nurses, therapists, physicians and best doctors in their team in the clinical care of almost any discipline from the allocations of medicine, whether main or subsidiary. They have the latest clinical techniques developed and available today. In addition, all the doctors they have are also positioned as the academic professors in the Faculty of in various colleges and universities. There have been many advances in the technology that has helped the healthcare professional to provide the best care to the patients. These advances have greatly helped the quality of care in the service of health, and in the future will reflect large monetary economies (Cutler, 2008).

Eligibility Criteria
Since the Medicare bill was applicable to all citizens, there had to be eligibility criteria through which people would receive medical insurance. The criteria for insurance require people to be of 65 years of age and a resident of the United States for 5 years to qualify for Medicare. Medicare also requires the person’s spouse to pay medical taxes for a minimum of 10 years. Another condition for people under the age of 65 that are disabled should receive Social Security of retirement benefits. Individuals that need kidney transplant or require dialysis for the final level renal disease (Sultz & Young, 2010).
In addition, individuals that do not receive benefits for 2 years would have to wait another 24 months to become eligible for Medicare benefits. In such cases, if the person is suffering from one of the listed diseases, he or she becomes eligible for Medicaid. There are some individuals that qualify for Medicare and Medicaid at the same. This holds true in a few states where individuals earning less than a certain amount. In this case, Medicaid pays the premium for Part B and drugs of the person. In 2008, the number of people depending on the insurance plan was 45 million. Experts believe the number could rise to as many as 78 million by the year 2030 (Jonas et al, 2007).

System Funding and Crisis
About 38 million people--some 33 million of them elderly and five million of them disabled--rely on Medicare, the federal government's health-insurance plan, for their health-care needs. But Medicare now faces a serious funding crisis. The program's outlays--what it spends on health care for its beneficiaries--are on the brink of surpassing its revenues. Unless it is fundamentally restructured, the program will no longer exist when most of today's high-school students reach retirement age in the year 2050. In fact, budget analysts predicted in 1996 that if nothing is done, the program will go bankrupt much sooner: just three years from now, in 2001.
That is when Medicare's primary source of funding, the Hospital Insurance Trust Fund, is expected to run out, according to the fund's trustees. In 1997, the fund had a surplus of more than $100 billion. But it is expected to dwindle to nearly zero by the year 2000, to run a $53 billion deficit in 2001 and to run a deficit in excess of $400 billion in 2005 (Kulesher, 2006).
Medicare's finances are in peril for two main reasons. The first is steadily rising health-care costs. In 1996, Medicare spending, at 12.2% of the federal budget, was the third-largest budget item. Only Social Security (the federal government's pension plan for retirees) and defense spending consumed a larger share. Medicare spending totaled $196 billion in 1996, and according to estimates from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), it will reach $312 billion in 2002.
The pressures exerted by rising health-care costs will be compounded by the effects of a looming population shift. Medicare is financed by working people who contribute to the program through payroll taxes. Upon reaching age 65, workers stop paying into the system and become eligible to reap its benefits. Medicare faces a crisis because it will soon be obliged to pay out benefits to a vastly larger group of beneficiaries, while depending on a much smaller pool of contributors. That will happen when members of the so-called baby boom generation--those born just after World War II--begin to retire in 2011. An estimated 40 million people will have reached the Medicare-eligibility age of 65 that year. At the same time, the pool of contributors to Medicare will decline by about the same number of payers.

However, the Medicare system is currently going in deficit and is very costly. Over the past few years, the question of what to do about Medicare has divided the two political parties, and debates have often been dominated by partisan bickering. Democrats have generally tried to protect the program's beneficiaries from reductions in benefit levels and from increases in monthly insurance fees, or premiums. Republicans have been more apt to demand fiscally conservative measures, including benefit reductions and increased premiums, as a way to preserve the program over the long term.

Garson, A. (2010), “The US Healthcare System 2010. Problems, Principles, and Potential Solutions”, American heart Association, 101. Cutler, D. (2008), “The American healthcare system”, health care magazine.
Kulesher, R. (2006), “Shredding the Social Contract: The Privatization of Medicare”
Hacker, J. (2007), “A proposal for guaranteed, affordable health care for all Americans building on Medicare and employment-based insurance”, EPI briefing paper.
Sultz, H.A & Young, K. M. (2010), “Health Care USA: Understanding its Organization and Delivery, Seventh Edition”, Jones & Bartlett Publishers, 7th Edition
Jonas, S. Goldsteen, R. Goldsteen, K. (2007), “An Introduction to the U.S Healthcare System”, Springer Publishing Company, 6th Edition
Shi, L. & Singh, D. A. (2009), “Essentials of the US Health Care System, Second Edition”, Jones & Bartlett Publishers, 2nd Edition

Similar Documents

Premium Essay

Us Healthcare System

...Health is wealth and as much as the latter is important to everyone, its significance and priority in each individual varies. In the United States there are two systems that cater to the healthcare needs of its citizenry and legal aliens alike who are residents. According to Wexler, the United States healthcare system is being looked to as a model by other countries because of the systems and coverage that the citizens enjoy (Wexler, 2011). However, there are flaws to the system as there is no perfect system to satisfy the society. Forces Affecting the Healthcare System Rising Cost of Healthcare. The shortcomings of the health care in the United States have become a significant moral issue. Being the only industrialized country that does not provide a universal health care, its citizens are left unattended. Other nations in the world have made health care as a basic right while the US consider it as a privilege and only accessible to those who can afford it. With this insight, everyone sees health care in the US as a commodity and not as a social service. Pohl writes that the uninsured Americans now number in tens of millions where most of them are those who are working hard to make ends meet (Pohl, 2002). Even with their employment (blue collar jobs, mostly), they still cannot access insurance because their employers do not provide them because of the high cost or these individuals are not eligible at all. Medicare/Medicaid. One of the biggest differences is Medicaid...

Words: 1034 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay

Us Healthcare System

...Assignment 1: U.S. Health Care System Strayer University The lack of national health care reform, astronomical coverage costs and the rapid/continuous increase in the number of uninsured individuals in the United States has prompted government to develop plans to provide and accommodate for medical care to aid the low income, to include the impoverished. Several local health departments do not only have the responsibility for the core public health functions; but are increasingly called upon to provide health care services for those individuals who cannot afford it. This assignment discusses the three forces affecting the development of our healthcare system. The three areas of interest and selected to discuss are diseases, availability, and social organizations. Several other areas have been impactful on the development; however, these areas seemed more prevalent and more commonly discussed regarding healthcare plus its reform. The evolving area of information technology in the healthcare industry will be discussed. The importance and relevance of information technology is a key contributor of communication. Information technology regardless of the industry is an extensive key thing for business, but relevant to healthcare information it articulates and organizes, the accessibility. Our health system has focalized on treating short term health concerns; however, chronic conditions such as obesity, diabetes, or heart disease are rapidly growing at epidemic......

Words: 922 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Us Healthcare System

...Akshata Makkaru kd7643, HCA 6200-02 April 22, 2015 Important trends in the Hospital Industry The objective of this paper is to discuss certain emerging trends in the hospital industry and their impact on the U. S health care system. The focus will be on Big Data, Re-admissions reduction program, and Tele Health services which have brought significant reforms in the U.S health care system. Big Data in Hospital industry: Large amount of data is produced in the healthcare industry and most of the data is stored in hard copy form. The current trend is towards the digitization of these enormous troves of data. Report says that the data from the U.S. healthcare system alone has reached,150 exabytes in the year 2011. Kaiser Permanente, the California-based health care network which has more than 9 million members is believed to have between 26 and 44 petabytes of potentially rich data from electronic health records, including images and annotations. By definition, big data in healthcare refers to electronic health data sets are so large and complex that they neither possible to manage with traditional software and/or hardware nor can they be easily managed with traditional or common data management tools and methods. Now, most of the patient data is compiled electronically because it is...

Words: 1434 - Pages: 6

Premium Essay

Us Healthcare System

...U.S. Healthcare System The U.S. healthcare system undergoes certain changes and reforms in the modern society, and there is an increasing need for health care reforms in the modern society due to the increasing costs on healthcare, the high rate of various diseases in the community decreasing the quality of the national health on a regular basis. The modern U.S. health care system is not very effective in the context of delivery, finance, management, and/or sustainability, and this is the major reason to imply certain changes and reforms in this field promoting its efficacy and success in the market. People living in the modern society should feel valued and important in the healthcare system receiving the needed assistance and support in a timely manner not depending on their health and economic status. Bar-Yam (2006) stated that “efforts to implement cost controls and industrial efficiency that are appropriate for repetitive tasks but not high-complexity tasks lead to poor quality of care” (p. 459). Thus, health care reforms will help to improve the quality of care increasing the efficiency of the U.S. health care system in the modern society inspiring much confidence, stability and security on the part of the patients. The U.S. health care system is overwhelmed with the inefficiencies and problems affecting the quality of care provided for the general population. The greater number of reforms in this field will change the situation for better applying the new and......

Words: 628 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

Strengths of the Us Healthcare System

...US Health Care Systems Strengths Tiara McDaniel American Intercontinental University HCM630-1205D-01 January 27, 2013 Introduction There is an opinion amid several Americans that regardless of coverage, price and other difficulties in the health care system, the eminence of health care in the United States is more superior than it is anyplace else in the world and there is a possibility that it may be threatened by restructuring of health care by President Obama. In addition to that, an article on Thomason Reuters, states that fifty-five percent of US citizens that was surveyed last year said claimed that American patients in American are provided with better care that people in other countries, but only forty-five percent of the participants stated that the US has the nation’s best health care system. (Reuters, 2008) Even though most Americans prodigiously back government tactics to raise the coverage and decrease the cost of health care, recent statistical evidence shows that sixty-three percent of American are afraid that there will be a decline in the quality of care that are given if the government were to make sure every citizen had health coverage. (Sack and Connelly, 2009) An additional study showed that eighty-one percent of Americans have the same worries. (Connolly and Cohen, 2009) Before one can make an educated assessment about the nature of care in one health system as opposed to another, it is essential to look at a varied array of indicators. Because......

Words: 1381 - Pages: 6

Premium Essay

Us Healthcare System Reform

...Topic: U.S. HEALTHCARE SYSTEM REFORM Course Project T. Wise DeVry HSM 534 Health Service Finance February 23, 2013 Week 7 Professor Alison Williams Background The United States, being the most diverse society in the world, has a long and unsuccessful history of attempts at healthcare reform. We spend almost $2 trillion dollars per year on healthcare, yet not all American people have medical coverage (Barton, 2007). A huge percent of the population have to rely on outside sources, such as benefit health care from an employer or from government programs, such as Medicare and Medicaid. As compared to other nations, our society has people that are more overweight, live under more stress, and are less in physical activity. Additionally, our healthcare system underperforms compared to with other nations in critical areas such as, access, quality and efficiency (Davis). How did our system get this way? Why are we paying so much while other nations not so much? A history of major events - The U.S. healthcare system is trying to evolve with modern times; however, as time goes on, our current situation becomes more apparent: * In the 1950s, the price of hospital care was growing; however, more attention was diverted to the war in Korea. Many legislative proposals were made, but none could not be agreed on. * In the 1960s, hospital care expenses doubled, and despite over 700 insurance companies selling health insurance, a large percentage of the......

Words: 3203 - Pages: 13

Premium Essay

German vs Us Healthcare Systems: a Comparison

...German & U.S. Healthcare Systems: A Comparison German & U.S. Healthcare Systems: A Comparison Mention European health care to an American, and it probably conjures up a negative stereotype — high taxes, long waiting lines, rationed care. It's not that way in Germany. Very little tax money goes into the system. The lion's share comes, as in America, from premiums paid by workers and employers to insurance companies. German health benefits are very generous. And there's usually little or no wait to get elective surgery or diagnostic tests, such as MRIs. It's one of the world's best health care systems, visible in little ways that most Germans take for granted (Knox, 2008, para. 1). The country's heath care system dates to 1883 — only a dozen years after Otto von Bismarck melded a disparate collection of kingdoms and duchies into the German Empire. The "Iron Chancellor," as Bismarck was known, persuaded the country's parliament to enact a national system of health insurance based on the guilds' sickness funds (Knox, 2008, para. 7). The 1883 health insurance law did not address the relationship between sickness funds and doctors. The funds had full authority to determine which doctors became participating doctors and to set the rules and conditions under which they did so. These rules and conditions were laid down in individual contracts. Doctors, who had grown increasingly dissatisfied with these contracts and their limited access to the practice of medicine with...

Words: 1777 - Pages: 8

Premium Essay

Healthcare System

...The U.S. health care system is the subject of much differentiating debates. On one side we have those who argue that Americans have the “best health care system in the world”, pointing to our freely available medical technology and state-of-the-art facilities that have become so highly symbolic of its system. On the hand we have those who criticize the American system as being fragmented and inefficient, pointing to the fact that America spends more on health care than any other country in the world yet still suffers from massive un-insurance, uneven quality, and administrative waste. Understanding the debate between these two diametrically opposed viewpoints requires a basic understanding of the structure of the U.S. health care system. This paper will explain the organization and financing of the system, as well as explain the U.S. health care system in a greater perspective. For most people, the frightening prospect of being unemployed, losing health insurance coverage, having inadequate insurance benefits, or living in a rural community without a physician raises one vital access-related question: Will I be able to get the care I need if I become seriously ill? Because of health care's special status, society has an ethical obligation to ensure that all people have access to an adequate level of health care including access to new technologies as well as existing ones, without facing excessive burdens in obtaining such care. Society's recognition and implementation of...

Words: 2630 - Pages: 11

Free Essay

Comparison of Healthcare in Us and Canada

...Tutor Course Date Final Project Comparison of Healthcare in US and Canada There are various differences between the healthcare systems in Canada and US. The differences were indelibly noted in 2004 after a policy analyst compared the two countries on the healthcare systems. According to the analysis, it was noted that US has an expensive healthcare system that doubles the Canadian healthcare systems. According to the percapita income expenditure on health report, the U.S spends $6,096 while Canada spends $3,038. On the other hand, other studies that were conducted later after the study was done indicate that the Canadian healthcare systems are better than the U.S healthcare systems. The reviews illustrated that the Canadian healthcare systems give the Canadians better and superior healthcare services as compared to the U.S (Pylypchuk&Sarpong, 2013). Pylypchuk andSarpong (2013) contended that various analysts have found that U.S is one of the countries whose spending on healthcare is big, but suffers the poorest healthcare for its people. Reports show that Canada has longer life expectancy than the US. The report on infant mortality in Canada shows that Canada is better than U.S by a great margin. Although analysts say that the comparative analysis do not give consistent differences between the healthcare systems, U.S is one of the countries that has been spot-lit of the idea of expensive healthcare. The actual reasons for the differences......

Words: 1854 - Pages: 8

Premium Essay

Organizational Leadership Task 3

...Melissa Dorn Organization Systems and Quality Leadership Western Governors University The United States and the United Kingdom have a lot of systems that are operated the same, such as their legislature and government operations, but the one difference is how they offer healthcare. The US healthcare system is an almost fully private system and the UK healthcare system is socialized. One may ask well what does this mean exactly. And the answer is that in the UK everyone has access to healthcare no matter how poor or rich they may be. The insurance is paid through taxation. In the US, the insurance is mostly private, which means that a person will have to pay for insurance premiums out of their pocket. The quality of the insurance will depend on the type of plan that a person is paying for and there could be high out of pocket expenses. In the US healthcare isn’t guaranteed by the government like in other industrialized nations. In the US the government doesn’t control most insurance systems or how they operate. People in the US who do have healthcare coverage are covered either by private insurance or a public health care system. A lot of unemployed individuals don’t have any coverage at all. Medicare, Medicaid, Children’s Health Insurance Program and the Veteran Affairs program are considered public health care systems. For some of these government programs, individuals may still be responsible for a premium depending on income. The US system also offers the......

Words: 1930 - Pages: 8

Free Essay


...In the US, healthcare has always been a controversial issue. On March 23, 2010, President Barack Obama signed into effect the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare. This law the President signed puts into place comprehensive healthcare reforms that will affect the next 4 years and beyond. Some of the large reforms that will happen are benefits for women, strengthening Medicare, holding more insurance companies accountable, and young adult coverage. Women will be benefited from the Affordable Care Act by having preventive services covered and having more insurance options. Young adults will benefit from the Affordable Care act because coverage will be available for children up to 26 years of age. By far, the largest thing that goes into effect started this year, which states that every American will have access to affordable healthcare insurance options. The Act ensures that low income and middle-income families get tax credits that cover most of their insurance coverage cost. Also, more low- income people will receive Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. By establishing these reforms, specifically the later one, millions of people who were not insured previously will be receiving healthcare. The health Insurance Marketplace was created for people to be able to compare their different health plans, see if they receive tax credits pertaining to the Affordable Care Act and private institutions. Healthcare in the United States is spread out over distinct......

Words: 1565 - Pages: 7

Free Essay

Measuring the United States Healthcare System

...Running head: MEASURING THE U.S. HEALTHCARE SYSTEM  1        Measuring The United States Healthcare System  Luc John Arnaud  HCM 550 ­ Quality and Performance Improvement in Healthcare  Colorado State University ­ Global Campus  Dr. Gloria Wilson  March 27, 2016                        MEASURING THE U.S. HEALTHCARE SYSTEM2    The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) is based  in Paris, France, and it is essentially an assembly that comprises over thirty members  (countries) who work with each other and who all share common commitments to  democratic states and market economies. The goal of the OECD is to promote and  improve economic growth, prosperity, sustainable growth, and expansion of each nation  (OECD ­ United States Mission, n.d.). The OECD “tracks and reports annually on more  than 1,200 health system measures across 30 industrialized countries, ranging from  population health status and non­medical determinants of health to health care resources  and utilization” (Anderson, F., Squires, D., 2010, para 1). The article titled ​ Issues in  International Health Policy ​ clearly exposed the fact that the United States of America  fundamentally lacks behind the majority of other developed nations as it’s related to the  efficiency, effectiveness, and solvency of its overall healthcare system industry. The facts  and data within the article come from an analysis of health data from 2006 from the  OECD, ...

Words: 1421 - Pages: 6

Premium Essay

Quality in Health

...Quality in Health Care Shanna Marie Fulwood HCA 305 Tessa Guisinger September 17, 2012 Healthcare has become a major issue within recent years. “In spite of its long history and common years the US healthcare system has a complex puzzle to many Americans” (Sultz and Young, 2010, pg XVII). Obama has tried recently to provide access to every individuals they can have some kind of medical care. His new healthcare bill says that everyone has to have medical insurance. This was done because so many Americans are without health care coverage. Now that is mandated we have healthcare coverage what our options? One of the major concerns that we face and always have faced is the quality of care we received. Anyone deserves quality out of the healthcare system. Fortunately there are ways to measure healthcare quality. These tools are mostly used by the professionals. Some questions that will be answered here are how does the quality of healthcare in the United States compared to the quality of care and other industrialized nations; how can an acceptable quality of healthcare be assured for all; will providing data in areas such as patient outcomes, compliance with national standards for preventive and chronic care, and comparative cost to the public be an acceptable measure of healthcare delivery outcomes; the physicians believe that only physicians could and should judge the quality of medical care, they found participation in such hospital peer review activities and most......

Words: 2356 - Pages: 10

Premium Essay

Indian Healthcare Influence

...American healthcare system on Indian health services USA is the world’s largest economy. Its dominance in the sphere of arts, science, technology, culture and medicine is unparalleled today. Given its dominant socio-political and economic status, no country on earth can be said to be beyond the sphere of American influence in almost all aspects of life. While the pervasiveness of such American hegemony is a matter of debate today in many sociological discourses today, for the purpose of this paper, we will concentrate on influence of American healthcare on the healthcare system of India. The American way of life is typified by the example of “rugged individualism,” where each individual works to secure their own interest....

Words: 2744 - Pages: 11

Premium Essay

Case Study

...Delivery of High- Quality, Prevention-Oriented Primary Care Healthcare is the professional medical care provided to the community by the health practitioners such as nurses, pharmacists, and doctors (Shi & Singh, 2012). Diagnosis, treatment, and care for the sick, provision of health education, counseling to the patients, and disease prevention, are some of the performed services by healthcare professionals. System wide incentives are the measures that the government uses to improve and encourage quality provision of primary healthcare among the citizens. Such incentives may include both the financial and the non-financial incentives (Shi & Singh, 2012). Atlas (2011) points out that the financial incentives are the monetary assistance provided towards healthcare to the citizens while the non-financial incentives may include extensive training plans and the reduction of the amount of work each practitioner is able to perform. In order to encourage the delivery of high quality healthcare, both the citizens and the healthcare providers will need to be knowledgeable of the incentive systems. Such efforts will ensure that each healthcare stakeholder utilizes the available incentive for their benefit (Shi & Singh, 2012). Additionally, healthcare providers will be accountable on how they use the incentives such as financial incentives provided by the government. Moreover, the usage of subsidies should be mandatory for every healthcare stakeholder (Atlas, 2011). For example, the......

Words: 1147 - Pages: 5