Note: This article will outline various healthcare models. No analysis will be provided.
With candidates’ platforms centering more and more on healthcare, it is important to understand the various models. Four models are outlined below.
Publicly Funded Healthcare
Under this system, healthcare is bankrolled through taxation and provided exclusively by government-owned hospitals and clinics, much like a police force or public library.
The publicly funded healthcare approach usually entails low healthcare costs, as the government dictates what services can be provided and ow much those services can cost.
Countries using this model include Spain, Cuba, New Zealand, Great Britain, and most Scandinavian countries.
This model employs an insurance system financed through payroll deduction. This is a “blanket” insurance that covers every person and is not designed to make a profit. Hospitals are typically private, but strict governmental oversight works to keep costs low.
Countries using this model include France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Japan, Switzerland, Germany, and several Latin American countries.
The Single-Payer model employs private insurance providers; these providers are paid by a publicly funded government insurance program. As such, insurance companies do not profit, and are much cheaper than for-profit insurance systems. Government clout extends to pharmaceutical companies as well.
This system is used in Canada, Taiwan, and South Korea, to name a few.
Here, insurance companies are private and are paid, as suggested, “out-of-pocket” by citizens, to private hospitals. Since these hospitals and insurance companies can dictate how much to charge for services, healthcare costs tend to be high. If a person does not have insurance, he or she must come up with the money to pay for healthcare by him/herself.
This system is used in the United States, India, China and in many developing countries.