Most nations have some form of a nationalized health care system. This is even seen in the United States with Medicare. Having nationalized health care means that there is a guarantee, at least to some degree, that someone will be able to access health services when they need it. Even the federal law that requires emergency treatment regardless of cost could be considered a national health care policy.
There are some disadvantages to consider as well with this subject. Would nationalized health care reduce the quality of care being received? Would it make health care less accessible? Here are some of the advantages and disadvantages to consider today.
What Are the Pros of Nationalized Health Care?
It would allow everyone to access a doctor without ruining their budget.
People would be able to seek out treatments for issues that are bothering them with this type of health care system when they might put off treatments in other systems. This means that a greater level of health can be achieved, even if it is just for their piece of mind.
It could lessen the costs of care.
Most nationalized systems of health care are supported by tax dollars. This means that there would be less of a cost after a doctor’s visit thanks to the supplementation of tax spending. There would be higher taxes, of course, but the direct spending comparison would save most households some money every year.
It could raise the standard of health in a country.
More access to health care means more access to wellness services. There must be some level of motivation to be healthy, of course, but motivation is easier to find when there are services that are readily available. The end result could be a reduction in the nation’s overall obesity rates.
What Are the Cons of Nationalized Health Care?
It could create “patient runs” on doctors.
People who normally wouldn’t go to the doctor may start going for every small issue that they experience. This would create higher patient loads for all doctors and the end result could be a lower standard of care for all patients because doctors are feeling rushed. It would also cause extended waiting times for standard services like an annual physical.
It could raise the costs of health care.
More patients mean more chances for malpractice to happen. Doctors carry malpractice insurance in case it does, but premiums would likely go up for doctors because their patient loads are up. This translates into higher costs that would be potentially authorized to be passed along to patients and consumers.
It would expand doctor shortages where they currently exist.
Doctors already have a tough educational road to follow, often being required to spend 12 years in schooling and training before they can enter into their own practice. With higher patient loads, potentially lower salaries, and no subsidies for college tuition, there could be reduced doctor enrollments that may lead to even larger shortages.
Nationalized health care provides some good advantages, but those advantages must be evaluated against the risks of instituting such a system. Do the pros outweigh the cons? The answer to that question will likely determine which side of this debate you fall upon.