Medicare For All-Pros and Cons
Last Updated on by
Medicare for All would mean a single-payer health plan for everyone that’s run by the government. Currently, Medicare is a federal program that provides health coverage to those 65 years and older. While it’s clear that Medicare for All is unlikely in this election, it’s certainly a topic many are discussing.
Pros and Cons of Medicare for All
The biggest benefit to Medicare for All is that the government covers the cost for healthcare while ensuring doctors provide reasonably affordable quality care. But, the biggest downside is that healthy people pay for the medical care of unhealthy people. In theory, universal healthcare leads to a healthier society and workforce.
Pros of Medicare for All:
- Coverage for all
- Providers receive equal pay
- Spending leverage for lower rates
- Medicare and Medicaid are single-payer systems
Cons of Medicare for All:
- Providers can choose only private pay options unless mandated differently
- Doesn’t solve the shortage of doctors
- Health insurance costs may not totally disappear
- Requires a tax increase
- Shifts costs of employer coverage
How Does Single-Payer Healthcare Work
Single-payer healthcare is a form of universal healthcare that is financed through taxes. This coverage would cover essential healthcare for all, and costs would be covered by a single public paying system.
Canada uses a single-payer system to contract healthcare services from private organizations. Whereas the United Kingdom owns and employs healthcare resources and personnel.
Single-payer only means a single public authority pays for healthcare. This kind of system pays for all healthcare-related services if covered.
How Much Would Medicare for All Cost
Most of us can agree that a single-payer healthcare system would cost the government a tremendous amount.
According to the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, Medicare for All would cost $32.6 trillion from 2022-2031.
Medicare for All would be paid for by:
- 6.2% income-based health care tax paid by employers
- 2.2% income-based tax paid by households
- The progressive income tax rate
The Marginal income tax rates would become:
- 52% on incomes above $10 Million
- 48% between $2 Mil and $10 Mil
- 43% on income between $500,000 and $2 Mil
- 37% between $250,000 and $500,000
Medicare for all would replace the Affordable Care Act and provide everyone with healthcare. Funding for this program would come from public funding much like Medicare as well as Medicaid. But, there are a few alternatives to Medicare for all.
How Medicaid Would Be Directly Impacted by Medicare For All Proposals
Medicare for All would eliminate Medicaid; Medicaid is the largest health insurance program in the U.S. Medicaid is larger than Medicare or the ACA, covering over 73 million Americans.
These beneficiaries would lose their coverage with Medicaid or CHIP and obtain Medicare for All coverage. Although, the needs for those that are on disability, and those who have recently been incarcerated, or have low income, are still issues to be addressed.
Public Opinion and Medicare for All
Sanders is a driving force behind the Medicare For All proposals. Some of the more moderate candidates like the public option. In theory, a public option plan could be more affordable for Americans.
According to a recent KFF poll, around 56% of citizens support a Medicare For All plan. About 68% like a public option where a government plan competes with private insurance and be accessible to all Americans.
Most Americans feel that taxes for most would increase under a Medicare For All plan. Many people think that more people would have coverage with a Medicare For All system.
Medicare for Everyone
With 32 out of 33 developed countries having some form of universal healthcare, it’s not surprising the United States is pushing for Medicare for All.
There was a time when people were going to the emergency room for basic care because they didn’t have coverage and other places would turn away. Universal health coverage could offer every American with affordable, reasonable care.
The biggest tax is on those making more than 10 Million dollars a year. The average American; however, will see lower copays and better coverage. In addition to better coverage, the program is more efficient. With only one public agency run by regional boards, there will be higher job satisfaction for doctors.
When doctors are happy, patients can be happier and healthier. More students will want to be doctors.
People currently receiving free-market healthcare in other countries pay less than half the cost, they get quality healthcare their entire lives and they have peace of mind knowing they’re covered.