John Malik
opinion

Germany's Universal Health Care Model Is Right for America

Germany's Universal Health Care Model Is Right for America
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Germany offers a health insurance model that, like Canada’s, results in far less spending than in the United States, while achieving universal, comprehensive coverage. The difference is that Germany’s is a multipayer model, which builds more naturally on the American health insurance system.
opinion
Solidarity and Self-governance, Germany developed the first social health insurance system in the world.
These two principles have remained at the core of Germany's continuous development of health care coverage for its citizens over the last 135 years.
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Red Flag laws are written to remove guns from people indicating unstable behavior.
In the United States, a red flag law is a gun control law that permits police or family members to petition a state court to order the temporary removal of firearms from a person who may present a danger to others or themselves. A judge makes the determination to issue the order based on statements and actions made by the gun owner in question.
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Germans are required to have health insurance, but they can choose between more than 100 private nonprofit insurers called “Sickness Funds.”
Workers and employers share the cost of insurance through payroll taxes, while the government finances coverage for children and the unemployed. Insurance plans are not tied to employers. Services are funded through progressive taxation, so access is based on need, not ability to pay, and financial contributions are based on wealth, not health. Contributions to sickness funds are centrally pooled and then allocated to individual insurers using a per-beneficiary formula that factors in differences in health risks.
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The United States has the foundation in place for implementing this kind of system.
Its Social Security and Medicare systems use taxation to pay for social insurance policies, and the health care exchanges created by the Affordable Care Act provide marketplaces for insurance policies. In an American version of this system, private insurers would have to be heavily regulated to ensure that coverage was affordable and to prevent the sort of rapid increases in premiums, deductibles and cost-sharing that have occurred over the past decade. Similar to regulations for Medicare and Medicaid, insurers would be required to provide a comprehensive set of benefits with limits on patient cost-sharing, which could be means-tested or tied to other criteria, such as having a chronic disease.
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