Undoubtedly, a large number of Americans are concerned about the ever increasing price of health care, so therefore controlling the price of health care is often referred to as the Number One domestic issue as well as challenge. It has been estimated that health care may very well consume one hundred percent of the U.S. budget by the year 2020 if other sources of financing the health of the nation are not discovered and/or organized immediately. Hence, it is up to the Congress and the President to decide how to allocate more funding to the control and reduction of health care prices, including the costs of health insurance and life saving medicines.
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There are at least forty seven million people in the United States without health insurance. Besides, there are workers in tens of millions who are afraid that they may lose their health coverage soon enough. Hillary Clinton’s American Health Choices Plan 2007 should alleviate their fears, however. The plan – if implemented though Clinton’s victory during the presidential elections of 2008 – is similarly bound to help the forty seven people million of America who are deprived of health insurance because it is highly expensive (“American Health Choices Plan”). After all, the American Health Choices Plan 2007 entails health care reforms worth $110 billion allowing all people of the United States to have health insurance.
Clinton believes in “affordable health care for all Americans,” and hopes to become the president who is finally able to achieve this goal (“Clinton Unveils Mandatory Health Care Insurance Plan”). Her plan allows American families to “receive tax credits to help pay for coverage (“Clinton Unveils”).” This is to reduce the burden of premiums for health care insurance. Moreover, Clinton has planned to provide federal subsidies to people who are not able to afford health insurance despite the tax credits.
Large businesses or the capitalists would be required to pay for their employees’ health insurance, also under the American Health Choices Plan. Clinton’s plan would additionally require health care “insurers to provide coverage for anyone who applies for it” without charging high prices or premiums (“Clinton Unveils”). Most interestingly, perhaps, the plan would allow all Americans to enjoy health care benefits that are similar to the ones enjoyed by the Congress (“Clinton Unveils”).
Certainly, Clinton’s plan considers all Americans as equals. The distribution of income is also mandated by the plan, seeing that it requires large companies to pay for the health coverage of their employees. As a matter of fact, Clinton’s American Health Choices Plan is a breath of fresh air at a time that the continuing conflict in Iraq consumes a huge part of the U.S. budget. This issue has remained as a matter of contention between the United States government and the people of America for several years. A report published in 2007 stated that according to a CBS Poll, two-thirds of the Americans believe that violence in Iraq may be beyond the U.S. military’s ability to manage, and only 25 percent believe that the U.S. military can be helpful in reducing the violence.
What is more, 63 percent of Americans disapprove of the President’s plan to send more troops into Iraq. However, 44 percent believe that the U.S. Congress should “pass a nonbinding resolution to express disapproval of the troop buildup, while 45 percent are opposed to such a measure (“Special Report: CBS News Polls”).” Seeing that the American people must be the ultimate beneficiaries of peace through the end of the conflict in Iraq, and it is their tax money that the government is currently expending on troops; it would have been appropriate for the Congress and the President to consider withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq.
By withdrawing its troops from Iraq, the United States would have released the finances that are currently tied up for troop buildup in the foreign country. These funds, once released, should have been used by the government in solving the health care crisis facing America.
Unfortunately, the present government has not taken a wise stance to resolve the health care issues facing America. But, Clinton’s plan is set to reverse the mistakes of the government by allocating more funds to the health care system regardless of the losses borne by the nation through the Iraq War. To show that the health care system is not accessed equally by all people of the United States, we may consider the problem of insufficient health coverage in a single state. The problems faced by the health care system in the following example of Pennsylvania may shed more light on the issues faced by the nation as a whole. After all, Americans are facing similar problems, regardless of their states of residence.
According to a survey report published by the Pennsylvania Insurance Department, in the year 2004, 92% of Pennsylvania’s residents had some type of health insurance coverage. Statistics revealed an improvement over the year 2003 when fewer than 90% of Pennsylvanians were insured (“Pennsylvania’s Health Care Conundrum”). Furthermore, the 2005 report informs us that almost 20% of people between the ages of 18 and 34 were without health insurance in the state during 2005.
This group of people, in fact, made up 50% of the entire uninsured group of Pennsylvanians. Besides, there were more part-time workers who were uninsured as compared to full-time workers; while the percentage of uninsured residents decreased with increasing income. In addition, 70% of the uninsured people of Pennsylvania reported that they could not afford either a government or a private health insurance plan (“Pennsylvania Health Insurance Status Survey”).
Research has further revealed that for 62% of all Pennsylvanians who relied on private health insurance plans during 2004, health insurance premiums have increased over the previous three years (“Pennsylvania Health Insurance”). What is more, despite a significant amount of federal funding to ensure that all Pennsylvanian children have health insurance, in the year 2006 it was found that almost 133,600 youngsters continue to live without health insurance coverage.
Critics say that this is because the state’s program – known as CHIP, and available to children of high income as well as low income families – is not administered properly; and that, in fact, by doing away with the long waiting lists for getting children insured, Pennsylvania may easily help itself invest in the health of its children in an improved manner (“Pennsylvania’s Children’s Health Insurance Program is expanding to be able to COVER ALL KIDS”).
Of course, Clinton’s plan is expected to combat the inefficiencies faced by the health care system, not only in Pennsylvania but in the entire country. Almost 8.3 million children of America do not have health insurance at present (“Clinton Unveils”). Seeing as the health of the Americans, including their children, is the health of the United States – Clinton’s plan guarantees “quality coverage” for all (“American Health”). After all, the Congressmen and Congresswomen are not faced with inefficiencies in the health coverage provided unto them. Clinton’s plan would ensure that everybody is treated as a VIP as far as health access is concerned. Indeed, this is the standard of living desired by all Americans in their country. Clinton should be applauded for her recognition of this essential need.
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