There is free health insurance out there, just not in the United States; at least not free in terms of free for everyone. Canada and England are two great examples of areas where health insurance is free. However, just because it’s free, doesn’t make it necessarily better. While American health insurance is comparatively expensive compared to Canada and England, there are plans that meet every budget.
To compare and contrast health insurance quotes, you can utilize this website. Simply type in your zip code to compare different rates of health insurance companies and find the best match for your own needs.
While having free health insurance does sound appealing, it comes at a cost for Canada. According to Reason Magazine, the average weight time for those going to the ER is around twenty-three hours. Doctors also can’t send patients to other hospitals to offer some relief to the extreme weight time because all hospitals are packed.
Are some people eligible for free health insurance in the United States?
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), there are those that qualify for low-cost or free health insurance. Uninsured and those with medical needs can access services through HRSA to improve their overall access to the healthcare system.
There are community healthcare centers that will offer services to everyone regardless of whether they have health insurance. Each facility has their own sliding scale to which they base payment on.
Under the Hill-Burton program, some health facilities and hospitals can offer reduced or even free healthcare. This is based on income and those that are eligible will need to be within the current HHS Poverty Guidelines. Even those whose income is twice as much as the HHS Poverty Guidelines could still be eligible for reduced cost health insurance as well.
According to the HHS, the poverty guidelines are based on income per person. For example, one-person household would meet eligibility if their yearly income were at or under $10, 890 in all states, but Alaska ($13,600) and Hawaii ($12,540).
For a two-person household the income would need to be around $14,710 (Alaska $18,380 and Hawaii $16,930). For each additional person, you simply would add $3,820 for the 48 states and $4,780 for Alaska residents and $4,390 for Hawaii residents.
What are some of the differences between the U.S. healthcare system and Canada’s?
The healthcare systems were very similar until the 1960s and 70s when Canada reformed its system. Today, the U.S. spends more on health services and healthcare than Canada.
How healthcare is funded is one of the big differences between the two countries. The U.S. is one of the few industrialized countries that do not offer some type of universal healthcare. This in addition to innovations in the medical field makes the U.S. health system not only expensive, but also the place to go when you need a medical miracle.
Canada’s healthcare system has ten autonomous provincial health systems and a federal system that covers their veterans. Funding and coverage in Canada is various to say the least and is considered a monopoly.
Being the U.S. does not have a universal healthcare program, approximately forty-five million people are without insurance at any given time. While there are federal laws set in place to cover those who are uninsured in emergencies, which is all that is required.
Will free or low cost U.S. health insurance cover all my medical needs?
According to WebMD, some things are covered by the low-cost Medicare health insurance and some things that are not. Those who are 65 and older are required to be enrolled in Medicare Part A, which is free. However, this will cover inpatient services.
To cover outpatient services one will need to also enroll in Medicare Part B, which is not automatically free. This will need to be paid as a low-cost monthly fee with an annual deductible.
For those who want more coverage, there are more Medicare plans that cover:
- Prescription drugs
However, these are usually run by outside insurance companies and monthly costs will be more or less depending on the plan you choose. As with Medicare, health insurance rates will vary.