Health insurance a hot debating point among presidential candidates

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Health insurance a hot debating point among presidential candidates

Health insurance a hot debating point among presidential candidates

Even with the presidential election still over a year away, the race for president is already heating up. One top priority of many candidates, which is a reflection of the concern of many Americans, is the lack of affordable health insurance in the United States. An estimated 46 million people are uninsured in America, a problem that many presidential candidates believe they can fix.

While ensuring all Americans have access to affordable healthcare appears to be a top priority of most of the presidential candidates, how that access should be provided differs greatly between Democrats and Republicans.

Democratic presidential candidates, including early frontrunner Hillary Clinton, are heavily endorsing universal healthcare coverage that is mandated by the federal government. Universal healthcare, according to Clinton and other presidential candidates, is the only way to ensure that the 46 million Americans without health insurance will get the health insurance they need.

On the other hand, the majority of Republicans are against universal health insurance, instead proposing that Americans purchase affordable health insurance from private insurance companies.

Clinton’s current proposal, which would cost approximately $110 billion, would mandate health insurance coverage for all Americans and provide subsidies for those Americans who cannot afford health insurance.

Republican presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani, on the other hand, has proposed that the current system of health insurance is sufficient and opposes any mandates regarding universal health insurance. Instead, he’s in favor of imposing tax incentives and other initiatives that will make health insurance affordable and accessible to all Americans. Additionally, Giuliani is trying to appease voters by promising action to make health insurance affordable to all without adding any more governmental control to the mix.

Universal healthcare coverage has been a topic of lengthy debate in the past few years with some proponents of health insurance for all Americans pointing to the universal health coverage offered in such countries as Canada and the United Kingdom. In the United Kingdom, for example, Britons pay nothing when they go to the hospital or to the doctor. Even visitors to the United Kingdom, who become injured or ill, can receive medical care without having to pay.

However, opponents of universal healthcare in the United States claim that universal health coverage will put too much power into the hands of the government, and they claim that Britons, for example, have long waiting times and often have to wait months for elective surgeries.

Regardless of which path America takes, the overhaul of the healthcare system, to ensure that all Americans have access to affordable health care, will be an expensive one, with costs reaching into the billions. It will also take considerable time to make the changes required to ensure all Americans have affordable health insurance. Still, whichever presidential candidate makes it into the White House in 2009, he or she will have a long journey ahead, as having access to affordable health insurance has become an increasingly urgent problem for many Americans.