View Universal health care
Universal health care is health care coverage that is extended to all eligible residents of a governmental region and often covers medical, dental, and mental health care. These programs vary in their structure and funding mechanisms. Typically, most costs are met via a single-payer health care system or national health insurance, or else by compulsory regulated pluralist insurance (public, private or mutual) meeting certain regulated standards. Universal health care is implemented in all but one of the wealthy, industrialized countries, with the exception being the United States. It is also provided in many developing countries and is the trend worldwide.
Universal health care along with the Basic income guarantee is part of a Social wage favored by technoprogressives. Access to health care is a basic right. Furthermore, ensuring universal access to health treatments would limit the potential for social divisions to be strengthened as Emerging technologies advance and human enhancement, Cognitive enhancement drugs, and Brain-computer interfaces become increasingly prevalent.
Many technoprogressives favor a system based on universal health vouchers.
Many industrialized countries have aging populations, with resulting increases in health care utilization, while others face rapid population growth. Health care systems throughout the world face sustainability challenges that may require far-reaching changes in national policy. One recent study projected that global health care spending would triple in real dollars by 2020, consuming 21% of GDP in the U.S.
Health care reform in the United States
Whether a government mandated system of universal health care should be implemented in the U.S. remains a hotly debated political topic.
Ensuring the health of all citizens has economic benefits. Those in favor of universal health care have called for the U.S. to implement universal health care by 2010, arguing that the current rate of uninsurance creates direct and hidden costs shared by all, and that extending coverage would lower costs and improve quality. Roughly 50% of health care dollars are spent on health care, the rest go to various middle-persons and intermediaries. A streamlined, non-profit, universal system would increase the efficiency with which money is spent on health care.
America spends a far higher percentage of GDP on health care than any other country but it has worse ratings on such criteria as quality of care, efficiency of care, access to care, safe care, equity, and wait times. Universal health care would also provide for uninsured adults who may forgo treatment needed for chronic conditions.
Several studies have shown a majority of citizens across the political divide would prefer universal health care. A 2008 poll of 2,000 U.S. doctors found support for a universal health care plan at 59%-32%. These numbers include 83% of psychiatrists, 69% of emergency medicine specialists, 65% of pediatricians, 64% of internists, 60% of family physicians and 55% of general surgeons. The reasons given include an inability of doctors to decide patient care and patients who are unable to afford care.