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Health care


Everybody’s favorite subject.

What s health
What’s health?

  • What does the concept of health mean to you?

  • World Health Organization defines health as a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being

    • Are you healthy?

  • Health is socially defined and may change over time/between cultures

    • For example, in the US obesity is viewed as unhealthy, whereas in other times/places, obesity indicated a person was prosperous and happy

  • Health Care is any activity intended to improve health

Why study health health care
Why study health/health care?

  • Offers insights on illness and how political and economic forces shape health care in nations

  • Sociologists examine:

    • life-threatening diseases, rates of life expectancy and infant mortality, access to health services, behavior of pharmaceutical companies

  • Currently, improvements have been made in health (life expectancy at birth has risen, life expectancy in low-income nations has increased)

    • Will improvements in health around the world continue to occur?

History of medical care in the us
History of medical care in the US

  • Throughout US history, medical care has been on a fee-for-service basis (patients billed individually for each service they receive)

    • Expensive because there are few restrictions on the fees charged by doctors, hospitals and other providers

  • There are both good and bad sides to the fee-for-service approach

    • Good: in the true spirit of capitalism, coupled with the hard work and scholarship of many people, this approach has resulted in remarkable advances in medicine

    • Bad: inequality of distribution

Things to think about
Things to think about…

  • According to the US Census Bureau, cost of health care per person in the US rose from $141 in 1960 to $3,925 in 2000

  • What about the people that simply cannot afford adequate medical care?

  • The US and the Union of South Africa are the only developed nations without some form of universal health coverage for all citizens

Why is it so darn expensive
Why is it so darn expensive?

  • Expansion of medical programs

    • third-party providers (public and private insurers) pick up large portions of doctor and hospital bills for insured patients

    • Patients pay premiums into a fund that in turn pays doctors and hospitals for each treatment

  • Gives doctors and hospitals an incentive to increase medical services

    • The more services they provide, the more fees they charge, and the more money they make

  • Patients have no incentive to limit their visits to doctors/hospitals because they have already paid their premiums and feel entitled to medical care, regardless of cost

The uninusured and underinsured
The uninusured and underinsured

  • Despite public and private insurance programs, about 1/3 of all US citizens are without health insurance or had difficulty getting or paying for medical care

  • Of the people not covered by health insurance, 8.5 million are children

  • Many of the uninsured hold full-time jobs but employers do not provide health insurance coverage

    • Make too little to afford health insurance

    • Make too much to qualify for Medicaid

Miss wiley s experiences with health care 1
Miss Wiley’s Experiences with Health Care #1…

  • Backpacking trip: Sick with strep and tonsillitis, fever of 102

    • No international health insurance AHH!!

    • Found a clinic, gave them my birth date and name, they gave me free visit and free meds

    • How would an international student from Ireland be treated in a US doctors office?

Miss wiley s experiences with health care 2
Miss Wiley’s Experiences with Health Care #2

  • Full-time student, kicked off Mom’s gov health insurance when I turned 22

    • Cannot hold a job while full-time student/student teaching

    • No way to pay for health insurance, cover prescription pills, doctor visits, etc.

    • Thankfully, my parents have sufficient funds: currently paying $300 a month for my coverage

    • What would an underprivileged student do in my shoes?

Frontline healthcare reform sick around america
Frontline Healthcare Reform: Sick Around America…

  • What was this film all about?

  • There is a health care crisis in America

  • Middle and upper class American’s are unable to get insurance

  • Costs of insurance have risen dramatically

  • Millions are underinsured

  • Many employers are no longer providing plans for employees

  • Many American’s are discriminated against because of their pre-existing conditions

  • Insurance companies avoid the sick and award rescinding

The new health care reform bill what is it anyway
The new health-care reform bill…what is it anyway?

  • Insurance companies will be forbidden from denying coverage to all people with preexisting conditions

    • Before this law, insurance companies could refuse to insure a person if their illness might be too expensive to treat

  • Extends Medicaid coverage to millions

  • Allows parents to keep children on their health-care plans until 26

  • All American’s will have to purchase health insurance

  • A number of taxes will be raised

Let s talk about the other side
Let’s talk about the other side…

  • Bill will raise taxes on individuals and businesses in a time of serious recession causing:

    • Loss of jobs

    • Loss of individual and family wealth and dispensable income – this causes a ripple effect in the economy, people have less money to use on everything from food, to cloths, to cars, to vacations and charity

Violation of basic freedom
Violation of basic freedom?

  • The bill increases government involvement in the health care decisions of individuals and families thereby reducing and restricting a basic freedom.

  • Is the bill constitutional?; no where in that core document of our government is Washington permitted to be involved in personal health care decisions, it is simply not a function of our government at the national level

Time for the state gov to act
Time for the state gov to act…

  • Federalism as a system is undermined by this bill, it will set a precedent for increased destruction of the federalized relation of national – state – local regulation in the future.

  • Throughout the national debate many voices have called for regulation at the state level.

Capitalism capitalism
Capitalism, capitalism

  • Health care is an industry. Industries produce the wealth which fuels economies and progress.

  • With increasing regulation and taxes (govt. involvement) in an industry, profits naturally decrease, thereby jobs are lost and the industry becomes less attractive for employment.

  • Fear that nationalization of the health care industry (which makes up a sixth of the US economy) will lead to dramatic losses in the advancement and quality of healthcare in America and therefore globally, since America sets the bar for quality in health care around the world.

Socialism vs capitalism
Socialism vs. Capitalism

  • Throughout history, socialized nations have failed while America has continued to lead and progress.

  • Nationalization of industries leads to decreased efficiency and loss of profitability in those industries.

  • Socialized systems of government and economic activity are naturally adverse to the free market economy that has lead to the flowering of this nation.

Wait time
Wait Time!

  • Impact on efficiency in American Health Care

    • Many are concerned that the health care industry will not be able to handle the influx of newly insured people; not enough doctors, wait times for care will dramatically increase.

    • Horror stories about wait time’s in countries with more nationalized health care

  • States with similar public health care measures have proven that expansion of health care coverage does not mean immediate access to care

    • increasing amount of people lacking care; unable to get an appointment soon enough

    • Dirty Secrets of Universal Health Care Article

Apparently a 26 year old is still a child
Apparently a 26 year old is still a child!

  • This bill allows “children” to remain on their parents health plans until age 26.

  • Many see this as ridiculous.

  • If 26 year olds are children from a health care perspective, why should they be considered adults in any other aspect?