Editorial: Universal Healthcare is a Must

Maeve Reiter, Reporter

America has the 35th highest life expectancy in the world. This is very low for an incredibly developed country.

The United States should adopt universal healthcare.

32 out of the 33 developed countries have implemented a form of Universal Health Care(UHC). The United States is the only developed country that does not provide healthcare for its citizens. As of 2017, 12.8% of adults in the United States, or about 44 million people, do not have health insurance, according to a study by the CDC. That is an incredibly high number which universal healthcare would eliminate entirely.

As well as raising the standard of living, UHC has benefited the economy of many other countries and would do the same for the United States. Agnes Binagwho, the Rwandan minister of health, and Paul Farmer, a U.S. medical anthropologist, said in a paper published about healthcare in Rwanda, “Investing in health has stimulated shared economic growth as citizens live longer and with greater capacity to pursue the lives they value.”

The impact that healthcare has in third world countries could also occur in the United States, according to the National Center for Biotechnology Information.

One way it can save money is reducing emergency room costs greatly – before Obamacare, 46% of emergency room visits occurred because the patients had nowhere else to go, according to a study published by the CDC. Emergency room visits are very expensive, and UHC could bring that number down because those who would need a doctor could visit one instead of going straight to the emergency room for something minor.

UHC goes beyond the Affordable Care Act and these numbers could decrease even more. All Americans would have health insurance and a doctor to visit, therefore saving money. Healthcare for all Americans would mean everyone would have the chance to go to a physician, allowing everyone to have the chance to live a healthier lifestyle. Bernie Sanders’s Medicare for All plan, for example, allows all citizens to visit a physician at any time.

Along with this, a healthier workforce would be created, because more people would be healthy. Every citizen would be eligible for healthcare, and according to The Balance, the government would keep hospitals up to equal standards, therefore providing a stable healthcare system for all. The government would also regulate medicine, eliminating overly expensive costs for those that may not be able to afford medicine without healthcare.

In the long run, universal healthcare can raise the standards of living, as well as lowering costs pertaining to healthcare for Americans. Sign the petition for Universal Healthcare here today.