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Should healthcare be free? Show more Show less
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Access to healthcare is essential for our quality of life and longevity. But healthcare doesn't come cheap. Should individuals be forced to pay their own healthcare costs? Is healthcare an inalienable human right? What are the pros and cons of free healthcare?

No, healthcare shouldn't be free Show more Show less

The individual should be financially responsible for the services they use. This encourages them to make better health decisions, increases the quality of the health system, and leave the government with more money to spend on other things that matter.
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Free healthcare disincentivizes making good choices

Under a health system that is free at the point of use, there is no financial incentive to make good health choices. It runs the risk of people seeking out danger because they will be taken care of it anything goes wrong.
Healthcare
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Context

The individual has the responsibility to keep themselves healthy. One way of incentivizing good health choices is by making them pay for their healthcare. A free system provides no incentive for making good health choices.

The Argument

With free healthcare you have to think of what that means. What does free healthcare entitle someone to have? Most people are under the assumption that it'll remove the costs of expensive appointments and surgeries, but would healthcare cover cosmetic surgeries, would it cover the cost of colored contacts from the optometrist? What free healthcare is supposed to do when implemented is move the healthcare system to being fully supported on government taxpayer dollars. That any medical cost would truly be little to nothing for at least 90% of people. Doctors and hospitals would have to supply care at the same costs, also eliminating the need for private insurance. [1] Changing the healthcare system from public and private to only public destroys not only the incentive of medical practitioners to go beyond the bare minimum of what's required of them but it also settles people into the belief of a medical freedom they do not have. While the cost would be significantly lower the speed at which you are seen and the benefits of the previous insurance would be lost. This would change the conditions of care a person receives and the speed at which it's given. Free healthcare would not absolve people of the consequences from the risks they take as some seem to believe. Free healthcare means that the system will tend to all wounds, it's not a promise that all wounds will be healed.

Counter arguments

Having a long and healthy life is an incentive in and of itself. There is no correlation between making good health choices and the cost of healthcare. The United States has some of the highest obesity rates on the planet, but it also has some of the highest healthcare costs. This clearly indicates that people do not consider the financial implications of bad dietary decisions when they are deciding what to eat.[2] In truth, just bolstering peoples understanding of general healthy practices and how to take care of themselves than people can decrease the risks they run into in daily life. One of the problems people have is that they are unable to tell when they should go to a doctor. If these things are clarified to the general public then there is no reason a healthy lifestyle with free healthcare can't be reached. While some people do seek out danger for the thrill of it there’s plenty of incentive to living a happy and healthy lifestyle that doesn’t put your wellbeing at risk.

Premises

[P1] Free healthcare is not what people believe it is [P2] Free healthcare gives the illusion that it'll cure any ails when some can only be treated

Rejecting the premises

References

  1. https://www.healthline.com/health/what-medicare-for-all-would-look-like-in-america#1
  2. https://www.cdc.gov/obesity/data/adult.html

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This page was last edited on Tuesday, 27 Oct 2020 at 10:47 UTC

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