A Right to Healthcare

HEALTHCARE Free healthcare has been a great source of debate in America for decades, and recently, more talk across social media and news sources have increased that debate.

Adya Mohapatra

HEALTHCARE Free healthcare has been a great source of debate in America for decades, and recently, more talk across social media and news sources have increased that debate.

Adya Mohapatra, Copy Editor

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Everyone in America should have a right to free healthcare. It proves to have more advantages than disadvantages, and it adheres to most people’s sense of morality. Many have advocated for nationwide healthcare for decades and continue to do so today, and it really is not a question of why.

The document that founded our country, our Constitution, states that all should be promised the same unalienable rights of “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” If that is the case, then this philosophy should also extend to healthcare. All should have the right to live, yet those who are unable to pay for healthcare find themselves in miserable and sometimes fatal positions. No one should have to worry about whether they will live to see the next day simply because they do not have the money to ensure they do. From an ethical standpoint, it is not fair to support a system where people are forced to suffer as a result of something that tends to be out of their control.

People often argue that everyone uses medical resources to different extents, so how is it fair that some people have to pay for healthcare that is going towards someone else’s needs? But those in a more fortunate position should use what they have to help others in a less fortunate position. It is simply the matter of humanity. We have no qualms about donating items, time and money to charity, yet medical bills is where we draw the line? A country should be defined by a nation of people supporting one another to ensure everyone is given equal opportunity in all things. So what is stopping us when it comes to healthcare?

Furthemore, if everyone had access to healthcare, its quality would improve as the entire population would be depending on it.

If free healthcare was established, it could lower the total cost for healthcare for everyone in the U.S. The money going towards medical resources would be added to the general taxes everyone has to pay, but because of that, the total cost of healthcare would be less. Additionally, if more people were in a good state of health, then economic productivity would drastically increase. Financial standings would benefit, and since America thrives on its economy, there would be no negatives to further economic contribution.

Besides, though many people claim that America does not have the money to ensure healthcare for all, it most definitely does. If one takes a look at where most of the U.S.’s money has been going towards, according to the Peter G. Peterson Foundation, nearly 50 percent of the nation’s 1.2 trillion dollar budget was spent on defense in 2017. Healthcare costs appear to be around 10 percent of the total cost. Yet, as a American Public Healthcare Association publication states, “nearly 45,000 annual deaths are associated with lack of health insurance.” The Balance says, “32 out of 33 of the developed countries in the world have free healthcare.” If one takes into consideration that those countries are the ones thought to be advanced, then what does it say about our level of advancement as a country? As we have only been around for 200 years, it indicates that we still have some ways to go concerning the development of our country.

In general, it is matters like this that make us question what is most important to us as people. Do we care more about our personal wealth than the health of the whole population? And as a country, do we need to rethink our wealth distribution so that we can benefit a greater number of people? Do we use money to maintain the luxuries that few people have? Our answers to these questions determine the most important aspects of society, and it is completely in our hands to carry out what we think is correct.