Worldwide effort to provide health insurance has the United States falling behind

Health Insurance

Health InsuranceFar less affluent countries around the world are making a much bigger effort to provide medical coverage.

As the health care debate rages on among Americans, and the decision is made by the Supreme Court regarding whether or not to keep President Obama’s system-wide overhaul, many countries around the globe are making a much more significant effort to ensure that their own citizens are all capable of receiving health insurance coverage.

These nations view the effort to make sure everyone can receive medical care as an economic investment.

For example, after many years of experiencing massive underfunding to its health care system, China is now on track to complete an initiative over the next three years, worth $124 billion, which should make sure that over 90 percent of its residents will have access to coverage.

Similarly, while there was coverage for less than half of the Mexican population only ten years ago, that country has now completed a drive to achieve universal coverage in the next eight years, which will massively expand the access that its people have to vital treatments to conditions such as breast cancer and leukemia.

In Thailand, only 1 percent of the population lacks coverage, though their gross domestic product per person is 20 percent of that of the U.S.

Similarly, two of the poorest countries in the world, Rwanda and Ghana, located in the sub-Saharan region of Africa, are currently developing health insurance plan networks to ensure that their citizens have coverage.

According to a former Mexican health minister, Dr. Julio Frenk, who is also the dean of the Harvard School of Public Health, “This is truly a global movement… As countries advance, they are realizing that creating universal healthcare systems is a necessity for long-term economic development.”

As many nations work hard to better their healthcare quality, making sure that the medical services stay affordable is among the primary challenges faced around the world, just as it is in the United States, where approximately 15 percent of the population does not have health insurance coverage. At the same time, though, this global push for access to medical care and the progress being made is leaving the U.S. in the dust.


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