According to an essay written by David Cutler, a professor in the Department of Global Health & Population at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, the high cost of medical care in the US is among the greatest challenges the country faces & has an impact on everything from the economy to individual behaviour. Administrative costs, corporate greed and price gouging, and increased use of expensive medical equipment were all factors that Cutler investigated, along with potential solutions to the problem of rising health care prices.
What Accounts for Its High Cost?
If you get your information on health insurance costs from the media or the internet, you could be confused about the factors at play. Health insurance premiums have been steadily rising over the past several years, but by looking at a few key indicators, we can get a sense of why this is. You may not only learn what motivates them, but also take measures to prevent them from causing harm to you and your loved ones. Let’s take a look at what’s driving up the price of health insurance, and then discuss how to acquire the protection you need without breaking the bank.
The United States has increased its per capita spending
The general public tends to believe that higher tax rates in developed nations like Canada, Australia, and the United Kingdom translate into superior healthcare for residents. The idea is predicated on the premise that “more is better.” This, however, is not supported by evidence! In terms of individual contributions, Americans are among the world’s highest. Yet, even with increased tax revenue, the nation’s healthcare costs continue to outpace the available funds. The percentage of people who get health insurance from the government is surprisingly low in the United States. Typically, insurance coverage is provided by an employee’s employer. That Americans invest so much in healthcare but still fail to fully benefit from it despite this paradox is, to say the least, perplexing. Since there are nations in the globe that do much more with much less expenditure, this calls into question the efficiency of spending.
Price Tags on Everything
In the United States, the cost of any medical operation or medication is astronomical. As a matter of fact, prescription pharmaceuticals in the United States are so expensive that many people illegally import them from Canada. This is because of corrupt policies that benefit drug firms at the expense of sick people. As long as they can justify the high price with the high expenditures of research and development, pharmaceutical companies may charge whatever they choose for their products. This can go on for quite some time until the medicine is branded and other firms are authorised to sell it. When there is no one else around to compete with you, making a profit is simple.
A Complicated Governmental Structure
The American healthcare system has gotten more intricate throughout the years. Insurers have several criteria for coverage. Because of this variation in coverage, hospitals must generate different sets of documentation for each patient. It’s impossible for them to implement uniform procedures and save money. The expenditures associated with meeting these individualised needs contribute to the rising cost of healthcare in the United States.
Doctors who specialise vs those who provide general care
As a final note, the average American is reluctant to stray from the guidance of an expert. A severe lack of family doctors plagues the nation. It is inevitable that the cost of healthcare programmes will rise as a result of the increased use of experts and their associated consultation fees.
In addition, relative to the rest of the globe, Americans tend to endure an excessively high volume of diagnostic procedures. The blame for this lies with the litigious nature of the American healthcare system. Safe is better than sorry, according to doctors. So they recommend a battery of tests to exclude all other possibilities. Sometimes doctors are too cautious and order tests that might not be necessary. By being so cautious, they wind up increasing healthcare expenditures.
Increasing Old Age Prevalence
The ageing of the American population is likely the primary cause of the growing price of healthcare. The baby boomer generation is overrepresented in the United States’ overall population. Because of advances in medicine, the elderly now stand a better chance of living to a ripe old age than their predecessors did. There is a cost to having a longer life expectancy. As the need for healthcare rises, the available supply decreases, leading to higher prices charged by service providers.
Motives That Are Often Given
The greater costs can be explained by the fact that more frequent illness is a normal part of life in the United States. One prevalent explanation is that Americans are fatter than Europeans because they eat more fast food. This is because of the excessive levels of salt and processed sugars in the typical American diet (SAD). To be sure, that can’t be the whole explanation. The United States has virtually abolished smoking, but Europe has a far higher per capita alcohol consumption rate and a greater proportion of smokers. However, the expense of healthcare is far lower than in the United States.