According to the U.S. Census Bureau in 2005 approximately 44 million people were not covered by any means of insurance, which made up about 15% of the United States population. In more recent estimates, the number has grown to about 60 million; witch would be about 18% considering the increase in population size. With numbers this great healthcare reform is needed, but, the big push at this time is Universal health care also known as a single payer system. Single payer systems are big in European countries and Canada, but it would be tough to judge if they really work, if you were to ask ten people in those countries if the system worked you would get ten different answers.
There are three major plans that are being discussed widely by politicians. The first is the “single payer” government controlled system, second is the “play or pay” system witch would require employers to offer insurance, the third is insurance regulation. This system would not cost anything more to the government, but would set limits on insurance companies.
Single payer health care is the most common throughout most westernized countries. With this system legislation would establish healthcare an entitlement to all citizens and everyone would be issued some sort of coverage card much like current insurance cards. With these cards, every citizen would be entitled to many different services including long term care. The federal government would establish some sort of national healthcare budget and individual state operating budgets. Individual hospitals would operate on a predetermined budget. Physicians would be reimbursed based on fees determined by the government. The system would closely resemble Medicare only on a much larger level. Existing programs such as traditional Medicare and Medicaid would be done away with completely.
Some economists have predicted that the cost of a single payer system would be in excess of $300...