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Health Care; a Right or an Industry?

Essay by   •  March 12, 2018  •  Research Paper  •  1,406 Words (6 Pages)  •  949 Views

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Dominic Leon


Andrea Lawlor

Healthcare: A Right or an Industry

I commence the essay by explaining the private healthcare sector, and its relation to neoconservatism.

I then go on to elaborate on the public health sector, and its affiliation with a

welfare-state social system. I argue that public healthcare is superior to private healthcare due to

unfair economic inequality in relation to overall health. I also argue that the government in fact

spends less money when it implements a public healthcare system. To counter this claim, I

provide evidence that shows the private healthcare system has both faster wait times and better

quality of care. This demonstrates how it is not tenable because the public healthcare system not

only costs less but helps all. For the duration of this paper, I will argue and prove that the public

healthcare system is far superior to the private healthcare sector.

Private healthcare is an institution that provides medicine and other forms of care by

entities other than the government. This type of healthcare is commonly related to neoconservatism.

I will use the United States of America as a representation of the relationship

between neo-conservatism and private health care. Neo-conservative government policies rarely

reflect conservative values such as “tradition, ritual, hierarchy, small government, fiscal

austerity, devotion to place, [and] homage to the past.”1 Neoconservatives believe American

greatness is measured by its willingness to be a great power—through vast and virtually

1 Bacevich, 2005: 70-1

unlimited global military involvement.

2 This pompous mindset directly reflects their healthcare

system. The private health care system is class based and with this, heavily favours the upper

class. Neo-conservatives see the upper-class as a superior body while others are subservient.

Given this, there is evidence of the upper-class being top priority in terms of healthcare. Neoconservatives

believe that as a valuable member of society, one should acquire enough income to

cover all health costs for oneself and one’s family.

Public healthcare is healthcare that is provided by the government, and not subsidized to

other entities. This healthcare system can be related to a welfare state government. A welfare

state is a social system in which government undertakes and protects the health and well-being of

its citizens; especially those in financial or social need. Sweden is a country that practices a

welfare state system. It is an exemplary choice when showing an amalgamation of public health

care and a welfare state government. Health care in Sweden is largely tax-funded; a system that

ensures everyone equal access to health care services. The goal of public healthcare is to ensure

a healthy community. A nation that practices a welfare state social system such as Sweden,

allows for the greater good of all to be taken into consideration. Given that Sweden has one of

the healthiest nations in the world per capita, it is hard to ignore the remarkable effects this

healthcare system has on its nation. By ensuring good health and providing fair treatment of all

citizens regardless of income or social class, public healthcare proves to be efficient.

It is often put into question whether there is a correlation between economic inequality

and good health. Economic inequality can be defined as the unequal distribution of household or

individual income across the various participants in an economy.

3 Economic inequality is

2 Bacevich, 2005: 74-5

3 Leach, John

inevitable in a society but it becomes an issue when the health of a nation is at risk due to such

disparity. A study from the University of Oxford explains that it is clear that those societies with

greater rates of economic inequality contain populations experiencing worse overall health

outcomes along with a series of other poor outcomes many of which might be expected to be

harmful to overall population health, such as higher rates of imprisonment, greater obesity and

lower trust or more anxiety.

4 This elucidates the idea that with an increase in economic

inequality, there is also an increase in diminishing health. The majority of citizens in the United

States of America are not able to receive healthcare. Alongside this, most of those that do receive

healthcare, end up bankrupt due to excessive costs. Medical problems are the leading cause to

personal bankruptcy in the U.S.5 By looking at the effects of income inequality and the excessive

costs of the system itself, it is clear that the private health care system is ineffective and flaw.

To counter this claim, one would argue that private healthcare systems do not require one

to wait a long time and has an overall better quality of care



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