Private and Public Healthcare

The framework of health care in the United States is such that government does not directly run health care services, however, it is highly involved in health care through funding, regulation and legislation. For example, the Health Maintenance Organization Act of 1973 provided grants and loans to subsidize Health Maintenance Organizations and contained provisions to stimulate their popularity. In the U.S., direct government funding of health care is limited to Medicare, Medicaid, and the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP), which cover eligible senior citizens, the very poor, disabled persons, and children. The federal government also runs the Veterans Administration, which provides care to veterans, their families, and survivors through medical centers and clinics. In the U.S., the federal government does not guarantee universal health care to all its citizens, but publicly funded health care programs help to provide for the elderly, disabled, the poor, and children.[ The Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA) also ensures public access to emergency services but the cost of emergency care required by EMTALA is not directly covered by the federal government and because of this, the law has been criticized. Increasing financial pressures on hospitals in the period since EMTALA's passage have caused consolidations and closures, so the number of emergency rooms is decreasing despite increasing demand for emergency care.   The government is pushing a lot of resources into the health sector however, in order to improve the lives of its people,   and its up to these private hospitals and long -term care facilities to utilize these resources to the benefit of the intended recipients to improve health.

"Health Care Expenditures in the USA". National Center for Health Statistics. Medical News Today. Retrieved 2007-07-18