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What are the detriments of incorporating a universal health care system here in the USA?

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lcowan6 | Student, Undergraduate | (Level 1) Salutatorian

Posted December 8, 2012 at 1:22 AM via web

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What are the detriments of incorporating a universal health care system here in the USA?

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted December 8, 2012 at 1:42 AM (Answer #1)

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There are many reasons why people think that a universal health care system would be a bad thing for the United States.  This is why no such system has ever been created here.  Among the problems that some people perceive with having universal health care are:

  • It would be very expensive.  If the US government were to provide health insurance or health care for every person in the country, it would be hugely expensive.  Taxes would have to be raised to accomplish this.  This could lead to reduced economic activity if the taxes are too high.
  • It would be inefficient.  If the government were to run the health care system, there would be no competition.  This would mean that there would be little incentive for innovation or for cost control. 
  • It would not necessarily give people what they want.  If the government were to determine how things much would be spent on health care and how many doctors would be hired, market forces would not be making these decisions.  Let us say that people want a lot of plastic surgeons.  If the government did not decide that there should be a lot of plastic surgeons, people would not be able to get as much plastic surgery as they wanted.  We would have the government, not people, doing a great deal to decide how much of what kinds of health care would be available.

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