“The United States spends more money per capita on healthcare than any other country in the world,” according to Dr. Jennifer L. Howse. Yet, despite this spending, many people still struggle to afford medical care. One reason is that American health insurance plans are expensive.
American Health Insurance Plans — Protecting You from Owing Money to Doctors
No matter how expensive health insurance plans are in the US, the purpose of having them is to protect you from owing money from doctors or hospitals if you get sick.
Although the purpose is self-explanatory, getting health insurance means you need to make regular payments to your insurer.
When you make regular payments to your insurer, the company agrees to pay a portion or all of your medical bills.
Most of your care comes from your primary care provider (PCP). When you buy an American health insurance plan, you can pick a PCP who belongs to your insurance company’s network.
Your PCP can be your physician or a nurse practitioner. When you need a lab test or a physical examination, you will see your PCP.
And when you are sick or you require medicare care, your PCP is your first point of contact.
If you have to make an appointment to get medical care, you have to call your PCP’s office. You must explain to your PCP why you need the appointment. If you are sick, you can easily get an appointment. However, if you only need a routine physical exam, you would have to wait several weeks.
Healthcare Spending Per Capita
According to the World Bank, the U.S. spent $9,873 per person on healthcare in 2016. That was higher than the next highest countries – Japan ($7,566), Germany ($6,842), France ($6,831), Canada ($6,746), and Switzerland ($6,726).
As you can see, the US is the highest spending country around the world when it comes to health care. The expenditure is spread out across various categories, including home health care nursing home facilities, and prescription drugs.
On average, a male child born in the US will be 74 years old. The male citizens of the US are in 51st place in this ranking. US women, on the other hand, can reach an age of 80.2.
Hong Kong has the highest life expectancy for males. On average, men can live up to 82 years while women live 88 years.
Iceland’s life expectancy rate for males is 81 years while women can live up to 84 years. Japan is the third in this category. Women in this country can live up to 81 years while women, on average, have a life expectancy of 87 years.
In most countries, life expectancy increases steadily. It is the result of the living conditions of a population group. Various factors influence it.
Medical care, drinking water supply, and constant and balanced nutrition are just some of them. Sadly, most of these factors are influenced by political favors.
When you look at the numbers, women typically outlive men. It is a biological difference. Rather, it is attributed to their behaviors. Men are carefree compared to women. More men smoke than women.
Men also avert against medical treatments. They also don’t take health precautions seriously.
Compared to other countries in the world, American health insurance plans are the most expensive. Despite that, the country underperforms when it comes to the healthcare system. The US failed to achieve better health results than other countries.
The US differs from other industrialized countries, like Australia, Canada, and France. Other countries make sure that their citizens have access to medical care through their universal health system.
The Affordable Care Act is boosting the number of Americans with health insurance coverage. It also improves the citizen’s access to medical care. The top performing countries are the UK, Switzerland, Sweden, and Australia.
With the absence of universal coverage, people in the US live without healthcare because of the cost of American health insurance plans.
Americans had difficulty accessing healthcare plans because of the cost. People in Netherlands, UK, and Germany could easily access universal coverage with cheap out-of-pocket costs while they still maintain quick access to preventive services.
The US ranks last in a measure of healthcare quality and access. It indicates that it has higher rates of mortality than its peer countries, like the Netherlands, Australia, and Sweden.
The healthcare system might not prevent death in every instance. But the differences in mortality indicate how effective the healthcare is provided. The US has one of the highest rates of pregnancy-related deaths compared to similar countries.
In the US, there are racial disparities in maternal mortality rates. Black women are more likely to die from pregnancy than white women.
Mortality within 30 days of being hospitalized can’t be prevented. However, the high quality of care can help in reducing the mortality rate for certain diagnoses.
Hospital admissions for patients with congestive heart failure and diabetes were more frequent in the US compared to other peer countries. The mortality rates after hospital admissions for heart attacks are the same in the US and peer countries.
That is, there are 4.1 deaths per 100 patients in America.
Because of how expensive healthcare is in the US, many people don’t get the medical services that they need. Even though health insurance plans are available across the US, they are expensive.
The overall cost of the plans is one of the reasons 1 in 10 people don’t have health insurance.
American health insurance plans are expensive. Because of the lack of a universal healthcare system in the US, most people avoid going to the hospital or getting the treatment that they need. As a result, they wound up spending more on treatments because their minor injuries become severe.