Health care policies are one of the urgent societal issues that need to be addressed. Even before President Barack Obama assumed office last 2009, different organizations are already conducting their studies about the state of healthcare practices in America. The issue readers are about to confront in this paper is about the enhanced coverage of health care policies for US citizens. Current health care policies available today, are only limited to paying medical check-ups and a limited number of days for hospital confinement.
This thus contributes to the widespread bankruptcy of many people due to health care costs. It has been observed from data collected that “over half of all bankruptcies today are caused by medical bills” (Obama for America, 2008). And from these loopholes and flaws in our current health care policies, the government and other related organizations are deliberating on whether the citizens need an expanded health care coverage or they would rather offer customized health policies for various people. In Support of the Health Coverage Expansion
“Businesses should recognize that human capital is an asset” (Richling, 2010). In this light, data shows that Medicare and Medicaid payments account for 20% of the total federal expenses. Most of these are expenses are compounded expenditures of companies and corporations who buy health care policies in bulk for their employees. This act is a clear indication that health now becomes a primary concern not only of the government but also of the workplace managers. Studies prove that the employee’s well being is directly proportional to their performance and productivity at work.
While this is not the only factor affecting workplace productivity, this is one of the benefits that companies are required to provide and which will ultimately benefit them as well. Maintaining healthy employees has been an agenda of most multinational companies. Especially during recession, employers needed less employees who can do extra job and particular expenses and benefits given to these employees are provision for their health care expenses. And large corporations often want to do this for their employees because of the tax cuts that they can avail of for providing health insurance to their employees.
Also, aside from the savings they will get from the tax cuts, buying insurance in bulk also allow them to get a discount from the insurance companies. So if a comprehensive insurance is at around $500 dollars, for example, a large corporation might be able to get a discount of $25 per policy per person. Another good thing about providing the corporation providing health insurance is that the HR department is already in charge of the deductions in the employee’s payment every month. The transactions with the health insurance company are already done in behalf of the person which is more convenient.
Why not Adopt an Expanded Health Coverage Policy? There are several reasons why corporate health coverage is not the best way to secure the health of its employees. First among the reasons is that a lot of people are complaining about the high cost of health insurance in their company. Here is an excerpt on the effects of corporate homogenization of health policies: Soon after Massachusetts state legislators passed a law in 2006 requiring full-time workers to buy health coverage from employers that offered it, Mirlene Desrosiers, a home health care worker, traded the state health insurance she could afford for an employer plan she could not.
(Smerd, 2010) Many workers are being affected by the compulsory buying of health policies from the company. This does not only translate into business monopoly but it would also restrict people from looking for other insurance providers who can give cheaper, more satisfactory policy coverage for the worker and his family. Not only does it mean the worker take home less money at the end of every month; it also means that instead of having the liberty to choose which insurance provider the worker should stick with, the company already made the decision for him.
The problem with an expanded health coverage policy is that it is becoming more and more expensive to avail. And there is also a big discrepancy in the health issues of these employees. Therefore if the government will require corporations to provide expanded health care policies to their employees then the management will have to divert money to fund the health care provisions for employees. What are the implications of paying for a comprehensive health care policy? The first consideration is that the expenses will also be deducted from the salary of the employees.
This means that their hourly rate will decrease significantly in order to pay for their health care policies. But there are other employees who would rather not pay for health insurance. Rather, they would use the money for the insurance once they or their family members acquired an illness. From the point of view of health policy critics, they say that “generous health insurance coverage insulates patients from the true cost of medical care” (Bentley, Effros, Palar, & Keeler, 2008).
This statement denotes that a large population of the American working class does not really know the value of the health policies that they are receiving. Without any health policies or without giving a more comprehensive health policy program to the employees, the corporation they are working for is in fact saved from paying more for these health policies. Furthermore, the employees are also given the jurisdiction on what to do with their own money. Conclusion and Recommendations Health care policies are indeed very important in securing the well being of people—not only in the workplace but also their family members.
Discussing health policies in the office is not an isolated issue because the government will be directly affected by the volatile productivity measures of companies and corporation in the land. The government must join hands with the public sector in order to look for the best solution for the health care policy issue. What the author can recommend is to give a employee consultation meeting in order to assess if they really need a more comprehensive health care policy. It must be brought to their attention since they are the ones who will be ultimately affected by these changes on health care policy.
Bibliography Bentley, T. G. , Effros, R. M. , Palar, K. , & Keeler, E. B. (2008). Waste in the U. S. Health Care System: A Conceptual Framework . The Milbank Quarterly , 629-659. Cubanski, J. (2007, August 3). Medicare and Medicaid: The Basics. Retrieved August 10, 2010, from Kaiser Foundation: http://www. kaiseredu. org/tutorials/NASI2007/medicaremedicaid. pdf KaiserEdu. org. (2010). U. S. Health Care Costs. Retrieved August 10, 2010, from KaiserEdu. org: http://www. kaiseredu. org/topics_im. asp? imID=1&parentID=61&id=358 Obama for America. (2008).
Barack Obama Anbg Joe Biden’s Plan to Lower Health Care Costs And Ensure Affordable, Accessible Health Coverage For All. Retrieved August 8, 2010, from Barack Obama Website: http://www. barackobama. com/pdf/issues/HealthCareFullPlan. pdf Richling, D. (2010). Why Investing in Health Care Enhances Employee Productivity. Retrieved August 10, 2010, from Workforce Management: http://www. workforce. com/archive/article/23/87/43. php Smerd, J. (2010). Mandatory Health Care a Bitter Pill for Massachusetts Low-Wage Workers. Retrieved August 10, 2010, from Workforce Management: http://www. workforce. com/archive/feature/27/02/30/index. php? ht=