Health care is a broad term, covering various services from preventive screenings and preventive medical exams to acute care services and long-term health maintenance. Accessibility depends on factors like economic and social constraints as well as policies regulating these areas.
Holding health insurance enables individuals to access preventive and screening services (Box 3.2). Furthermore, having regular care access increases likelihood that chronic conditions will be managed effectively.
Health care encompasses the prevention, diagnosis, treatment and management of diseases, disorders or conditions that impact human bodies. Health services are provided by government entities, private companies or non-profit organizations.
An inclusive healthcare system should offer access to high-quality, cost-effective care at all levels for everyone in society, and include various primary and preventive health services in order to decrease chronic disease burden.
Though healthcare is essential, many people do not have access to it due to being uninsured or not being able to afford it. Unsurprisingly, these people often suffer worse health outcomes and are more likely to develop chronic illnesses or conditions than others.
Health insurance provides individuals and their families with financial protection to cover medical costs that arise, helping to prevent illness or injury from developing further.
People are grateful to have health insurance, as it helps cover a range of health expenses such as doctors visits and hospital bills.
Additionally, annual vaccinations, check-ups and wellness programs to keep people healthy are worthwhile investments.
Health insurance policies are governed by both state and federal laws, such as ERISA and HIPAA.
Subsidies are one tool available to those unable to afford health insurance on their own, whether through tax credits or cost sharing reductions.
Subsidies vary based on your income; for instance, those with lower income can typically qualify for larger subsidies than those with a higher income.
Subsidies help exchange enrollees who qualify keep premiums low – no more than 8.5% of household income is taken out for coverage, sometimes even less! They make sure your premium payments don’t go beyond this threshold.
Tax credits not only help make insurance more affordable but they can also increase enrollment among younger and healthier adults in individual markets. Policies designed to remove other obstacles to purchasing insurance such as information and administrative complexity could complement premium subsidies effectively.
Private health insurance plans provide additional choices than public plans, which can be beneficial for certain people.
You have two primary options for purchasing private health insurance: through an employer or directly on the individual market via marketplace/exchanges in your state. Individuals purchasing through marketplace/exchanges often qualify for tax credit subsidies and cost-sharing reductions when buying through this method.
There are other methods of financing health care, including government programs and prepaid plans, but these policies tend to provide less coverage for mental health services; typically providing less benefits as private health insurance; and typically being more costly.
Public insurance provides assistance for medical care costs that cannot be afforded without financial support from the government, such as Medicare, Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).
Although public insurance plans tend to be less costly than private health plans, they may also be more restrictive when it comes to what services are covered and when they can be utilized. Furthermore, certain plans may exclude individuals with preexisting conditions from using them.
As surveys and research indicate, most Americans tend to appreciate their health coverage and are highly satisfied with its overall quality. Satisfaction rates with public insurance far outstrip those with private plans which often feature high deductibles, limited networks, unexpected medical bills or denials of coverage.