Health Care Crisis

By Raymond Lopez

          Health care is a topic that is very important to most if not all American families; After all it involves our families well being. We want the peace of mind to know that if something happened to us or our loved ones it would be covered by our insurance. Despite this fact many people are actually unaware of how bad our health care system has become. There are proposals being discussed in congress right now to try and alleviate the problems, but they are lacking in support. So why should you care?  
          Health insurance costs have gone up in recent times. It has become a financial burden to many American families. Even some families that do have health insurance often do not have enough to cover their medical bills.  
• In 2007, 25 million Americans were underinsured. (Source: Commonwealth Fund Biennial Health Insurance Survey 2007)
• From 2001 to 2005 the amount people pay for health insurance increased 30 percent. During this same period income only increased 3 percent. (Source: Robert Wood Johnson Foundation)
• In 2008, the total annual premium for a typical family health insurance plan offered by employers was $12,680. (Source: Kaiser/HRET Survey of Employer-Sponsored Health Benefits, 2008)
• Healthcare expenditures in the United States exceed $2 trillion a year. (SOURCE: Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, Office of the Actuary, National Health Statistics Group ;) The federal budget, in comparison, is $3 trillion a year.

          Underinsured is defined by researchers at the Commonwealth Fund as “people who spent 10 percent or more of their income on medical expenses (or 5 percent if they were low income), or people who had deductibles that equaled at least 5 percent of the family annual income”. It is often the case that people with health insurance still do not get proper medical treatment due to the fear of not being covered or paying a high deductible. This means they forgo doctor...