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In 2018, the U.S. spent approximately $3.6 trillion on healthcare, meaning an average of around $11,000 was spent per individual. With healthcare expenses rising in the U.S. everyday many people believe that healthcare should be universally free. Former presidential candidate, Bernie Sanders advocated publicly for a change, Medicare for All would mean that every American citizen would have health insurance coverage under the bill and for the most part would not have to worry about out of pocket prices. If approved the government would take a phased approach when implementing Medicare for All. During the first year the bill would apply to those who are between the ages of 0-15, then in the second year to those who are between the ages of 17-32. In the third year, those who are 33-49 years old would qualify, and finally in the fourth year it would apply to those whose age ranges from 50-64.
“Medicare for All, employers would no longer have the burden of providing health insurance; employers would pay a higher Medicare payroll tax (and possibly a new Medicare value-added tax [VAT]) but then have no further involvement with health insurance.” (Seidman, 2015, pg.913) This means that healthcare would essentially become free for all Americans, taxes would increase but in return your getting free healthcare which is a pretty good trade. Under the Medicare for All bill it would increase the number of Americans of have access to healthcare sources from 91.2% as of 2017 to 100%. Under the bill the quality of services could really go either way when it comes to a change. It could be improved and become more so value-based than it is now, or it could worsen because since everyone would be insured providers know that they would be paid regardless of whether or not they provide adequate to patients.
On the other hand, currently in Canada, visits to primary care doctors, hospitals, and diagnostic services are all covered by Provincial Health Insurance. Although, some cost sharing is included when you take into consideration other services like ambulances, prescribed medications, dental & vision care, and long-term care facilities. This can become challenging for those who have large out-of-pocket expenses, but the government does help them out by providing a tax credit to ease this burden. Sometime in the early 2000s the province of Ontario came out with a primary healthcare reform. . “The reform consisted of the gradual introduction of models characterized by mixed payment mechanisms as well as practice requirements and an enrollment process, formally defining the physician-patient relationship.” (Laberge, 2017, pg.2) The new reform included coverage for primary care visits, diagnostic test, educating patients, health promotion and disease prevention.
I feel as though the representative should throw their support behind the Medicaid for All because, in the end it will help those who do not currently have health insurance because they cannot afford to pay for it or any other reason that it may be. With everyone being covered by health insurance then more people will go to the doctor and improve their health. There is plenty of people out there who needs to go to and want to go to the doctor but cannot because they do not have health insurance. Then on the other hand you have those who do have health insurance but still cannot go to the doctor because they cannot afford to pay the co-pays and premiums. Under Medicare for All consumers would not have to worry about paying all of that money and if they did have to pay anything it would be nowhere near as much as they are paying today. Furthermore, the whole point of a representative is to represent “the people” and to do what is best for them and in my opinion, this would be the best decision for “the people”.
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