Health Insurance

The situation and the need to invest in health insurance are aptly summed up by Senator Sherrod Brown, Democrat of Ohio. “No matter how bad the condition of the economy — we can’t delay pursuing comprehensive health care,” said Senator Sherrod Brown, Democrat of Ohio. “There are too many victims who are innocent of anything but working at the wrong place at the wrong time” (The New York Times).

Purchasing health insurance becomes all the more imperative for the elderly. “The risks of experiencing major health problems and incurring substantial medical expenses increase dramatically for people ages 55–64, so the consequences of lacking insurance may be more severe” (W. Johnson and S. Crystal).

Recent studies reveal that “uninsured American adults receive less appropriate care and fewer needed health services than their insured peers.” The same study also suggests on the need for health insurance to improve quality in services. According to it, “coverage to the near-elderly uninsured may greatly improve health outcomes for these groups” (J.Z. Ayanian).

These figures point to the importance of buying health insurance. According to a study “In 2006, Americans spent over $7,000 per capita on health care, up from $2,400 in 1980 and $800 in 1960 (all in 2006 dollars).

National health care spending has grown more rapidly than the economy as a whole, so health care accounts for an increasing share of the overall economy (Chart 4-1). National health care spending now accounts for about 16 percent of gross domestic product (GDP), up from 9.1 percent in 1980 and only 5.2 percent in 1960.”

Yet the scene has now changed dramatically. According to the Census Bureau, “After climbing steadily for six years, the number of Americans without health insurance dropped by more than a million in 2007, to 45.7 million” (Ian Urbina). The health experts also reiterate this by pointing out that the rate of people without health insurance in the USA went down by 15.3 percent in 2007, from 15.8 percent a year earlier.

Health insurance can greatly help to bring down your medical bills and also provide you the much needed security if you are unfortunate enough to be suffering from any kind of disease. This is because as medical care advances, so do the costs for treatment.

The very purpose of health insurance is to provide you the much needed care you require in difficult times. Health insurance not only protects you and your family financially in times of unexpected injury or illness but can also provide you with preventive care options.

Remember that you can never predict what your medical bills will be. In some years they may be low and in others they may be high but at all times you will atleast have your piece of mind knowing that you and your family are protected against diseases and injuries.

Also keep in mind that there is a direct relationship between health insurance and health care. For one, you are free of tensions and secondly health insurance provides for regular visits by the doctor and so you get quality services when you need it.

You can buy health insurance for yourself and your family directly from insurance companies. However, before making a choice, do take time to study various health plans and then buy which best fits your requirements. Let me point out that you have a choice of buying Managed health care, which has quickly become the most common type of health insurance in the United States.

With health care costs almost constantly on the rise, managed care health insurance can offer a more affordable option to traditional fee-for-service (or indemnity) plans. Managed plans stress preventative medicine too, so if most of your annual medical expenses come from check-ups and the like, this may be a good bet.

You also have the option of taking an indemnity plan. This plan on the other hand, will almost certainly be more expensive, but if you have a trusted physician you’d like to keep, or suffer from frequent illness, the additional cost is probably worth it.

I conclude by saying that national health care expenditures are expected to nearly double over the next 10 years. That’s largely due to the increased use and cost of prescription drugs, advances in medical technology and treatments, hospital equipment and services, increased specialty care, over-use of emergency rooms for non-emergency needs, and other factors. In the light of this the only way out for us is to ensure that we have health insurance to tide us through the rough weather.

References

The Importance of Health and Health Care. Chapter 4 http://www.whitehouse.gov/cea/2008_erp_ch4.pdf

J.Z. Ayanian et al., “Unmet Health Needs of Uninsured Adults in the United States,” Journal of the American Medical Association 284, no. 16 (2000)

The New York Times. When a Job Disappears, So Does the Health Care < http://www.nytimes.com/2008/12/07/us/07uninsured.html?bl&ex=1228798800&en=8a47220b90bc54e4&ei=5087%0A>

Ian Urbina. A Decline in Uninsured Is Reported for 2007. < http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/27/washington/27census.html?_r=1>

W. Johnson and S. Crystal. R.W. Johnson and S. Crystal, “Health Insurance Coverage at Midlife: Characteristics, Costs, and Dynamics,” Health Care Financing Review 18, no. 3 (1997):

 

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