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Debate Team 2: Health Care is a Privilege:(Heather)

Just like any other debate, the debate on weather health care is a right or a privilege is something that can be easily argued on both sides. However, today I will discuss why I think health care is a privilege. “The U.S health care system is a complex and ever-evolving machine. It is the culmination of various health care policies stemming from numerous special interests, political expedience, economic considerations, and theoretical perspectives—it is a complex, costly, and sometimes fragmented system (Friis, 2013).” According to President Barack Obama, health care should be a right for every American; however, statistically data contradicts our president’s statement. In 2010, more then 50 million people we re uninsured (Maruthappu, 2013). “Health care as a right in law may lead to over-utilisation of healthcare resources (Maruthappu, 2013).” Michael Cannon made the point that if you treat health care as a right, you wont have health care because there will be no one there to provide it (2009). Health care as a right could also lead to people expecting things for free and taking advantage of that fact that it is a right and free. The best way to articulate that health care should not ne a right is by the following quote, “I choose to smoke cigarettes, should anyone be expected to pay for my lung transplant (Youtube, 2009)?” Another reason that health care should be considered a privilege is, the “difficulty with considering healthcare as a right is that this right, unlike many others, is dependent upon the resources of a society,and the ability to meet the demands of the population without disparity in distribution and allocation of medical care (Maruthappu, 2013).” Ultimately, we as a nation would have to agree on the fact that every individual would receive equal care, regardless of socioeconomic status, age, gender, ethnicity, and so on. “The difficulty in introducing health care as a right also lies in the fact that care, unlike other goods, cannot be simply quantified and allocated equally to members of a society. Thus, there comes a point where the lack of responsibility of one person must be compensated by an increase in another, where the healthy pay for the unhealthy (Maruthappu, 2013).” Considering the facts presented on why health care should not be a right, it is evident that health care should, in fact, be considered a privilege.


(Angela) There are many people on both sides of the debate, some believe that health care should be a right and some believe that health care is a privilege. However, health care is not a right, we are not guaranteed to have such coverage, nor guaranteed that this coverage be given to you, health care is a privilege that only those who are able to provide it for themselves are entitled to. A privilege is being favored or preferred in a society, where certain conditions are met in order to gain this privilege; this essentially empowers those select few, while it disempowers others (Story, Crethar, & Hall, 2014). While a right constitutes a good or commodity that each individual is free to take or do with as they please, it is an entitlement that we owe no one for (Kelley, 2010). Each person under the constitution of the United States of America is entitled to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness”, however they are not guaranteed this right, it is their own personal responsibility to ensure that they achieve this (Haft, 2003). The current health care system is extremely expensive, costing on an average of over three trillion dollars a year, it is a privilege attainable by the wealthy, or provided by employers, or the government for the elderly; however not everyone is entitled to this right (Haft, 2003). It is not the responsibility of the government to provide everyone the privilege of healthcare, the only people under the constitution of the U.S. entitled to such a privilege are prisoners, only because it would be inhumane to lock them up with no chance at obtaining coverage on their own and not provide for them (Haft, 2003). Most individuals have a chance to work and obtain or purchase healthcare on their own, why should it be up to those few who are able to do this to provide for those who aren’t? Each person is granted basic rights; however they need to remember that with those rights, also come responsibility. It is solely each individuals responsibility to provide this for themselves, it is not a right granted to them.


(Tami) American Care Act (ACA) is an appropriate law for the United States. ACA is also commonly referred to as “Obamacare” and there is always much debate over how affordable it is, the markets, and the access of care. Nothing is ever perfect and these things could use some tweaking to try to better the law. There are many parts of the law though that help benefit a lot of American citizens. This law now requires preventative care to be free with insurance. This lowers the cost of healthcare and helps better a person’s life from getting preventative care versus going without until the health problem becomes worst. No one can be denied based on the preexisting conditions. “More than 129 million Americans with pre-existing conditions can no longer be denied coverage or charged more because of their health” (The White House, nd, pg. 1). Also patients with the need to have more treatment than others, such as cancer patients, no longer hit lifetime limits and can get the care they need. This law allows patients and doctors to be in charge and not so much the insurance companies. Other parts of the law that are not mention as much, but are appropriate for our society is how this law is fighting fraud. It helps to stop fraud by having stronger penalties, new technology and harder screening procedures. This part is working because every year since the law passed it has been recouping money. According to Rep. Ron Kind (2014), in the YY2013 $4.3 billion was the amount that was recouped due to the Affordable Care Act.


(Juanita) The Affordable Care Act (ACA), officially called The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA)  “aims to increase the quality, availability, and affordability of private and public health insurance to over 44 million uninsured Americans through its many provisions, which include new regulations, taxes, mandates, and subsidies” (Obamacare Facts, 2015). Though President Obama’s intentions where good and a step in the right direction by offering affordable healthcare to all citizens no matter the current health state;  the Affordable Care Act is flawed which causes issues such as increased healthcare cost.
In 2010, the Affordable Care Act was approved by Congress and will be phased in over several years. However, the argument remains as to the law’s appropriateness in a democratic nation such as the United States.

It is an appropriate law to require citizens to purchase health care insurance however; it should not be at the expense of healthier citizens. Because insurance companies cannot deny health care coverage, it increases the cost of those who may not need continuous care. Medical cost are rising, therefore coverage cost are rising which in turn causes more citizens not to afford coverage thus increasing the strain on government subsidy programs (Time for Affordability, 2015). Citizens will see tax increases in order to cover health care subsidy programs such as Medicare, Medicaid, Veteran’s Administration (VA) (Friis, 2013).

ACA offers some financial relief by allowing citizens to purchase healthcare based on individual needs through Health Insurance Markets (Obamacare Facts, 2015). The markets allow citizens to compare plans for lower rates. ACA also allows young adults to stay on parents insurance until the age of 26 (Obamacare Facts, 2015). ACA outlines ten essential services that are required in health care policies which may not be covered in current policies: maternity care, rehabilitative & habilitative services, pediatric services, mental & behavioral health treatment, hospitalization, laboratory services, prescription drugs and ambulatory patient services (Essential Benefits, 2015).