Everyone Who Has Health Care Gets Help from the Government

Posted By Levi

March 9th, 2015 8:05pm

Category: Health Care

One of the reasons why it so difficult to get anything done is because of  the high level of ignorance that exists among Americans about what government does. Matthew Yglesias at Vox draws our attention to this poll.

Health care poll

Start with the elderly, 65 years and older. Only 7 percent say that government subsidizes their health care even though they all use their Medicare card when they go to the doctor. We do not pay the full cost for our healthcare. The government pays a portion of it. What the government pays is called a subsidy.

Medicare is the federal government program that provides medical care for the elderly. If you are poor or disabled, Medicaid provides help with your medical bills.

Their misunderstanding about who provides Medicare reminds me of these kinds of posters we saw mainly from Tea Party supporters during the debate on Obamacare.

Midicare

So, one more time. If you use Medicare, it is the government that pays for it. Yes, it is true we contribute to Medicare during our working years but the total amounts we contribute during those years don’t always pay for all the medical bills when we retire.

And for those of us who get coverage through our employers, yes, we receive government subsidies as well.

“The way this works is that when your boss pays you money, you have to pay income taxes on it. When your boss pays you in health insurance, you do not have to pay income taxes on it. That makes it efficient for bosses to pay employees, in part, by buying health insurance for them.”

So, whether you support government or not, your health insurance would be unaffordable without its help.

The government also plays another important role in the way we receive health care – it  regulates it. As Matt further points out

“The boss can’t buy insurance just for the younger and healthier employees, he can’t charge women more for it than men, and he has to offer it to all new hires regardless of their health history. This is the foundation of the American health care system.”

Without these massive subsidies and without these regulations, health care as we know it would simply not exist.

Twitter: @Levianthony123

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