Healthcare coverage in the US is a controversial topic. Over the course of its many legislative debates, the international community has not shied away from sharing their own ideas. As a distinctive system among first-world countries, the US implements a health system just shy of universal healthcare. Instead of being subsidized by the government, healthcare coverage happens through an insurance fund that may be single- or multi-payer specific.
Last 2014, close to 90% of the population were covered with varied types of insurance policies partially assisted by government subsidies. These came in the form of Medicare, Medicaid, or status-based policies such as the Veterans Administration. It is common among Americans to avail of multiple insurance policies and has been the trend ever since.
From an outsider’s perspective, this will seem strange. Americans opt for a number of insurance policies because of the staggering cost of healthcare in the US. In 2013, an estimated $8,713 was spent per person – equivalent to 16.4% of its GDP. On this basis, the US spends more than double the average that other advanced or emerging countries.
In 2018, US spending for healthcare hit $3.65-trillion, the highest level of spending in the modern world. Since 2014, private healthcare spending per person has been steadily increasing and is projected only to get worse with its current state. It has maintained upwards of 90% population-wide coverage since 2014.
Three decades ago, the US was ranked as the 6th best country with commendable healthcare. Nine months ago, it fell to 27th.