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HLT 205 Week 1 Discussion Question One

HLT 205 Week 1 Discussion Question One


Compare and contrast the U.S. health care system to the health care system of another country.  What similarities or difference s exist?  Cite references to support your answer.

Health care in the United States is provided by many distinct organizations, made up of insurance companies, healthcare providers, hospital systems, and independent providers.[1][2] Health care facilities are largely owned and operated by private sector businesses. 58% of community hospitals in the United States are non-profit, 21% are government-owned, and 21% are for-profit.[3] According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the United States spent $9,403 on health care per capita, and 17.9% on health care as

HLT 205 Week 1 Discussion Question One

HLT 205 Week 1 Discussion Question One

percentage of its GDP in 2014. Healthcare coverage is provided through a combination of private health insurance and public health coverage (e.g., Medicare, Medicaid). The United States does not have a universal healthcare program, unlike most other developed countries.[4][5]

In 2013, 64% of health spending was paid for by the government,[6][7] and funded via programs such as Medicare, Medicaid, the Children’s Health Insurance Program, and the Veterans Health Administration. People aged under 65 acquire insurance via their or a family member’s employer, by purchasing health insurance on their own, getting government and/or other assistance based on income or another condition, or are uninsured. Health insurance for public sector employees is primarily provided by the government in its role as employer.[8] Managed care, where payers use various techniques intended to improve quality and limit cost, has become ubiquitous.

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The United States life expectancy is 78.6 years at birth, up from 75.2 years in 1990; this ranks 42nd among 224 nations, and 22nd out of the 35 industrialized OECD countries, down from 20th in 1990.[9][10] In 2016 and 2017 life expectancy in the United States dropped for the first time since 1993.[11] Of 17 high-income countries studied by the National Institutes of Health, the United States in 2013 had the highest or near-highest prevalence of obesity, car accidents, infant mortality, heart and lung disease, sexually transmitted infections, adolescent pregnancies, injuries, and homicides.[12] A 2017 survey of the healthcare systems of 11 developed countries found the US healthcare system to be the most expensive and worst-performing in terms of health access, efficiency, and equity.[13] In a 2018 study, the USA ranked 29th in healthcare access and quality.[14]

The rate of adults uninsured for health care peaked at 18.0% in 2013 prior to the ACA mandate, fell to 10.9% in the third quarter of 2016, and stood at 13.7% in the fourth quarter of 2018, based on surveys by the Gallup organization beginning in 2008.[15] At over 27 million, the number of people without health insurance coverage in the United States is one of the primary concerns raised by advocates of health care reform. A 2009 study done at Harvard Medical School with Cambridge Health Alliance by co-founders of Physicians for a National Health Program, a pro-single payer lobbying group, showed that nearly 45,000 annual deaths are associated with a lack of patient health insurance. The study also found that uninsured, working Americans have an approximately 40% higher mortality risk compared to privately insured working Americans.

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